Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2022 |
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• Identity theft
A hidden danger of the fast pace of life that’s rampant in the United States is spreading to Kaua‘i. With our mailboxes stuffed with come-ons for credit cards, personal information available to all on the Internet and the need to give our credit card number and other information in order to shop, we are more and more in danger of identity theft.
Kaua‘i writer Pam Brown details this danger and how it has affected Kaua‘i residents in a two-part series that begins on today’s front page.
Readers are advised to go over this report to find out how to best protect themselves from having a theft take their personal information and numbers and using that information to charge items, to write checks and to take on your identity.
Unfortunately, many Kaua‘i residents can tell of finding stolen mail alongside a road, mail that was likely taken from a mailbox by a thief in search of a credit card mailing or a check in an envelope.
Film director Steven Spielberg showed in his film “Catch Me If You Can” how a young check forger lived the high life – for a while at least – by writing bad checks across the globe. That young check writer ended up in prison during an era in the 1960s that ID thieves would consider primitive today. That young thieve changed his ways, and likely helped design a check or credit card you are using today.
But even with the many security features put in place by credit card companies and banks, we all now need to be vigilant to fully protect ourselves.
It is sad to realize that this crime against other members of our Island family is going on, often committed by drug addicts desperate for more funds to buy ‘ice’ or another drug.
We may one day have to do away with home mailboxes, or use ones that are lockable; in fact lockable mailboxes are becoming common along our rural streets.
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