Tag: Crime

Adventures with Identity Theft – What the Police Said.

Click here for part 2.

Where we left off, I had been to the bank to get things sorted out there, I’d been in touch with Experian, and I had raised a report with Action Fraud UK. So far so good.

The good probably stops there. I find the rest of this story infuriating on many, many levels.

Here is the response I got back from Action Fraud UK about this (copied and pasted from the email)

You recently made a report which we recorded under NFRC************

Home Office Counting Rules set out the circumstances under which we can record a crime and on this occasion the matter you reported to us cannot be classified as a police recorded crime. Home Office Counting Rules for Fraud and Cyber Dependent Crime can be found online at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/counting-rules-for-recorded-crime.

You have indicated within your report that the misuse of your personal details or that of a company trading style played a part in the matter you are reporting. The use of another person’s identity, often referred to as identity theft, is not a police recordable crime. Where the details are used to obtain goods or services, we can only record a crime on behalf of the person or organisation which was defrauded as a result of the misuse of an identity.

An example of a situation in which we could record a crime would be where details were used to obtain credit, the use of which left the provider of credit with a financial loss. In these circumstances we would record a crime for the provider of the credit and look to establish if there was scope for the matter to be investigated.

Whilst the misuse of your identity cannot be classified as a police recorded crime, we do recognise that identity theft can cause significant distress and inconvenience. For advice and support, please see www.actionfraud.police.uk/fraud_protection/identity_fraud.

What happens next?

Whilst we have not recorded this matter as a crime, we will still make use of the information you have provided. Information reports are utilised to enrich the overall intelligence picture which assists with the formulation and refinement of prevention strategies.

If you have any queries regarding this letter please visit www.actionfraud.police.uk/FAQ. If you would like more information on how to protect yourself from fraud and cyber crime, please see the guidance at www.actionfraud.police.uk/support_for_you. You can also register on our partner website www.actionfraudalert.co.uk to receive email alerts about new and emerging crime types.

Thank you again for taking the time to report this matter.

For the ‘too long, didn’t read’ crowd – and to clarify to those who did read the above – identity theft is not classified as a crime unless a credit company has actually lost some cash. This email let me know for sure that there was going to be no police response. Someone was/is out there, running around with all they need to commit fraud in my name, and it is not a crime. There would be no effort to trace the person who attempted to pin a £10,000 loan on me. And goodness knows what else if they had actually managed to get access to my bank account.

I still feel ragey about this. I won’t rant about it here, as these posts are more about sharing what happened, what I did about it, and what I’d advise anyone else to do to protect themselves, or what to do should this ever happen to them.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the end of the story. Where we left off, I was waiting for Tuesday to arrive so that I could make the rest of the phone calls I needed to make. I had to phone in to work for this purpose (right off the back of a week off!) to try and get this lot sorted out.

I started off phoning Royal Mail, letting them know I had been a victim of identity theft, and that I wanted to make sure that none of my mail was being redirected. Thankfully, the impersonator had not thought that far ahead. No redirections were in place.

I phoned the other relevant credit agencies – Equifax and Transunion (I’d already spoken to Experian at the weekend). I let them know what had happened, and also that I had registered myself with CIFAS for protective registration. They reported that there were no other hard searches on my files.

I then decided to check my online banking to see if that pesky £10,000 had been given back to Hitachi yet. What I found instead was surprising – £9637.12 had been transferred away from my account, with only ‘Transfer’ listed in the details part.

I phoned the bank. I was able to get on to my telephone banking very easily, as my voice is now my password. I got through to a real person – who told me that they weren’t allowed to tell me anything, and that I needed to go to a bank in person with my identification. This time, I was actually able to book an appointment at the bank for later in the afternoon. This is the point in this whole story where I feel HSBC really let me down.

We’ll get in to the bank shenanigans in the next post. Thanks for reading this far!