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The Growing Problem of Phone Account Hijacking Records of identity thefts reported to the FTC provide some insight into how often thieves hijack a mobile phone account or open a new mobile phone account in a victim’s name.In January 2013, there were 1,038 incidents of these types of identity theft reported, representing 3.2% of all identity theft incidents reported to the FTC that month.After discovering that another phone on my account also had no signal, I called my mobile carrier on a landline phone.The customer service representative explained that my account had been updated to include new i Phones, and in the process the SIM cards in my Android phones had been deactivated.Identity theft reports to the FTC likely represent only the tip of a much larger iceberg.According to data from the Identity Theft Supplement to the 2014 National Crime Victimization Survey conducted by the U. Department of Justice, less than 1% of identity theft victims reported the theft to the FTC.

After about two months my carrier sent me the records.

She assumed it was a mistake, and told me to take my phones to one of my mobile carrier’s retail stores.

The store replaced my SIM cards and got my phones working again.

A store employee explained that a thief claiming to be me had gone into a phone store and “upgraded” my two phones to the most expensive i Phone models available and transferred my phone numbers to the new i Phones.

I called my mobile carrier’s fraud department and reported what happened.

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