HPD: Identity Theft Prevention Program
The Hoboken Police are doing their part to step up awareness and prevention of identity theft in the Mile Square – just in time for Holiday Shopping!
See information flier here – and read more about what the HPD is doing below…
Hoboken Police Launch Identity Theft Prevention Program
“Police Chief Anthony Falco Sr. and The Hoboken Police Department has announced a new program aimed at educating the public on how to Deter; Detect: and Defend an instance of Identity Theft.
ID Theft affects nearly 10 million U.S. consumers annually and imposes $50 billion in unnecessary costs on the nation’s businesses every year.
In Hoboken alone, it is estimated that an Identity Theft related incident is reported to the police on an average of (8-10) per month. An ID Theft can occur in many ways some of which are: stolen/lost wallet or purse; personal information stolen such as social security number, date of birth, credit card numbers etc.; via the Internet by use of bogus websites or emails called “phishing” in which a scammer sends an email appearing to be a legitimate business soliciting personal information or “updating” info; capturing information by using a “skimmer” device at an ATM, or bank to capture your information; rummaging through your trash “dumpster diving”; stolen or lost mail and numerous other scams.
Police Chief Anthony Falco Sr., as part of his many innovative community outreach initiatives he has established upon being named Chief, has approved this program, which will be administered by Detective Lieutenant Mark Competello, Detective Bureau Commander. The program consists of an information email sent to all victims of a reported instance of an ID Theft related incident. This email outlines tips on how to prevent an ID Theft; steps to take after an ID Theft occurs; and links to informative websites as well as how to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Moreover, Chief Falco has also announced that the HPD has been enrolled into the National ID Theft Clearinghouse Database. This database is an invaluable tool for investigating identity theft. Through the Clearinghouse, a national database of millions of consumer complaints about identity theft, law enforcement can find victims of identity theft and their experience, and information about identity thieves. Use of the Clearinghouse may link reports of identity theft that otherwise look like isolated events can assist in: identifying other agencies involved in an investigation; and spot significant criminal activity including making an arrest, in some cases.
According to Det. Lieutenant Mark Competello, who will be the program Administrator, this program can assist and educate a victim of an ID Theft, swiftly after reporting an incident of ID Theft, as well as provide investigative leads to affect an arrest. “Many times when a crime such as this is reported to the police, a report is taken and the victim is usually left to contact financial institutions and credit agencies on their own. The follow-up program by the HPD will center on the victim and provide the much needed assistance and referrals to make the process of inconvenience and hassle of an ID Theft more bearable.” Although the focus will always remain to make an arrest of an individual who commits a crime, if possible, in these cases Chief Falco has recognized the assistance to a victim of an ID Theft to also be of equal importance and will be treated as such with the creation of this program.”