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What do the experts say about it?

The Home Office - "Identity theft occurs when your personal information is used by someone else without your knowledge. It may support criminal activity, which could involve fraud or deception."
Shredded paper

How does it happen?

Identity theft is rare, especially for young people, but it does happen. The Internet is great, but it's not difficult to piece together a picture of someone's activities online if you've got the right tools. Couple it with phishing attacks to gain personal information and you've got the recipe for stealing someone's life from them.

In the real world, people shred sensitive documents. Online, it's more difficult. It's important to remember that even stealing a friend's password and posting blog entries in their name is a form of identity theft.

But how does this affect me?

Everything you do on the Internet is logged, whether you like it or not. Normally this isn't a problem, but if you're giving out personal information - even small bits of info you wouldn't think were important - someone could piece together a picture of your life and use it against you.
CD shredder

Get it Sorted

Identity theft may not be an immediate threat to you as a young person, but you can take a number of steps to reduce the chance of your password being stolen and used online without your knowledge.

Find out more

For further reading on identity theft, take a look at the following sites:

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