Millions of Dead People Get Identities Stolen

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graveyard scareBy Blake Ellis

Just because you're dead doesn't mean you can't be robbed.

Identity thieves steal the personal information of about 2.4 million deceased Americans each year, according to a new report from fraud prevention firm ID Analytics. That amounts to a rate of more than 2,000 thefts per day.

Using these stolen identities, criminals typically apply for credit cards, cell phones and anything else requiring a credit check, the report found.

About 800,000 deceased Americans get their identities stolen intentionally, and another 1.6 million identities are stolen by chance -- when an identity thief uses a Social Security number that happens to match that of a deceased individual, for example.

Lenders are typically the main victims when thieves use identities of deceased people to apply for credit products. But surviving family members should also be careful, said Stephen Coggeshall, chief technology officer at ID Analytics.

"Surviving family members can also be the victims of this identity fraud as they are left to manage the estates of their deceased loved ones," he said. "It's important for people to monitor their deceased family member's identities for at least one year."

To determine how many deceased people get their identities stolen each year, ID Analytics collected the names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers on 100 million credit applications.

It then calculated how many of these applications used information that was associated with deceased individuals listed in the Social Security Administration's Death Master File -- a government database of deceased Americans.

More from CNNMoney:
Social Security pays millions to dead people
Identity theft top consumer complaint

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democracks0

This has Acorn aka Obamacorn written all over it.

As the 2012 election get's closer Obamites will be finally getting those shovel ready jobs that Obama promised digging up the dead people to register to vote.

May 03 2012 at 12:26 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
bluerussiandoll

Let me put it this way, Identity can be taken easy. When I still lived in Alaska and was drawing unemployment, I found out that I was reciving another ladys check and she was getting mine. How because of, just one number was off and she had the same name. I contacted the office and let them know and the answer was sorry and they switched. Computers are only as good as the person in putting the information. So it goes back to the start. Who is over looking the input of the workers.

May 03 2012 at 6:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
arthuropodd

My late mother-in-law's identity was stolen over 15 years ago. She'd been dead over 5 years when my father in law moved, and presumably some papers with information blew away though we tried to burn all records.
We found out when a collection agency started using illegal tactics, after we explained what we thought happened. "We'll sue you for her credit card balance! Her name was Roberta and your brother in law is Robert? He just changed a letter of his name to fake it, so we'll sue him!"
That conjured the mental image of my brother in law in a dress like a Monty Python sketch, and I must have spent several minutes laughing into the phone.
They never called back.

May 02 2012 at 9:09 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Cora

just check the voter regs.. there are PLENTY of dead people on them

May 02 2012 at 8:41 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
hman570

You don't have to be dead to have your idenity stolen. I have been trying to get mind back now for 7 years and still the Credit Burues keep smacking me will bad news?? Forgive the bad spelling.

May 02 2012 at 6:57 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to hman570's comment
diabalos76

Nothing to forgive, you're telling your story

May 02 2012 at 7:48 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
a1putwins

Since when is good management of the states interests suspicious.? Mr. Romney has proved his worth as a manager of finances over and over again. He is also the most ethical man to ever run for president. Those in the federal workforce who have become rich by stealing the tax payers money are terrified that an honest man is coming to town. The federal goverment has needed a good house cleaning for 40 years.
Why are so many people jealous of other people who have done well in life. Anyone who is intelligent and creative with a need to succeed can make it in America. Oh and the other part of the formula, if you want to live a good life and retire in style you have to show up everyday and work hard.
I can tell hundreds of stories of people who have lost their jobs and refused to quit on the dream .
Liberal democrat folks would have you believe that it's a zero sum game where the evil rich are ******* up all the money and not leaving any for the 99%. Thats simply economically not true. In America opportunity is unlimited and there are profits for everyone. It is easier to become wealthy in America than any other place on earth. Why do you think people from all over the world want to come here ?

God bless America

May 02 2012 at 6:27 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
WanDa

HMM..THERE is a site taht lists a lot of dec's people's SS#..should that site continue to exist..or is it lega and OK..it post the deceased"S DOB, SS # et al..

May 02 2012 at 5:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dal

Note to ID thieves... I will come back and haunt you! = O

May 02 2012 at 4:56 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to dal's comment
diabalos76

With bad credit!

May 02 2012 at 7:49 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jeff

When some one die. You let the SOCIAL SECURITY office know it and they flag that number. There you go that the Fed Government job not doing it job. SOCIAL SECURITY and the Credit company should be working together to help stop this.

May 02 2012 at 4:06 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to jeff's comment
THIS NEW FORMAT

Maybe the relatives aren't letting the Social Security Office know about the deaths. I've heard of people cashing their relatives' checks for years after they've died. So no, it's probably NOT a huge conspiracy.

May 02 2012 at 7:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Randy

How is it that a private company can get the name, date of birth and SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER from 100 million credit applications? MAN we are stupid !

May 02 2012 at 3:49 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply