This is an article that aims to explain Identity Theft in the simplest way possible using the 5 W’s – what, who, where, when and why – and 1 H – how. It is very alarming that identity theft has not only reached hundreds and thousands of people but to date, 9 million Americans every year. That is such a wake up all to start moving our barricades in our fighting positions and as they say, knowing what the problem is already winning half of the battle.

What? – Identity theft is the modern way of stealing. It is using someone else’s identity without any consent from the owner. But stealing does not simply end there. After illegally using the identity of other people, the thief will then proceed to the next step and that is the actual stealing.

Who? – Identity theft can be done by anyone you know or do not know. They can simply be present anywhere, taking all the careful steps to go and grab your identity. That is what makes identity theft alarming. You simple do not know who to go against and who to trust because everyone can really take things to their advantage. Also, knowing nothing about the possible person who will steal your identity is much like being blind in a one-shot gun fight.

Where? – Identity theft can happen anywhere. The beginning phase can be at the bar as someone approaches you and ask for this and that in exchange of some beers and a goody-goody dance. It can happen in the parking area as someone approaches you while you are picking your groceries that fell to the floor. It can happen to the bank as you cash out money from the ATM or as you sign a check. That is also what makes it more alarming. Much like the person involved, you will never know where it can happen. Realizations may just come after the information is already stolen from you.

When? – Identity theft can happen at any time. It can be when you least know about it, when you least expect about it. And when that happens, identity theft will continue to happen without you knowing about it all at once. Time will just come when you will have to face debt collectors because of things you never even consumed, or you will receive letters from banks, loaning agencies and the likes telling you to pay this and that. By that time, everything can already be too late.

Why? – Identity theft mainly happens because of people’s greed. These thieves just need money to make a good fortune for them while the victim suffers the opposite. They probably saw a good potential of accumulating wealth from you because of the possible lifestyle you have. They may have grown insecure and wanted to have the same. So basically, it is money.

How? – Identity theft may happen through illegally getting your information from social networking sites or tricking you or someone to give them what they need. This can happen through scavenging and looking for documents that may have been part of the trash. This can happen through false offers done personally or through phone calls and online communications. This can actually happen in any way possible. It is just a matter of vigilance now.

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