Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Scam or Identity Theft?

I just got a call on my cell phone from someone claiming to be from the "DCS", a collection agency for delinquent student loans. He said that my account was about to be sent for wage garnishment due to non payment of $12,900.

He had my name (first and last) but obviously, I told him that he had to have the wrong person, given that all my schooling happened in another country. He asked me for the last four digits of my social security number to confirm my identity but I refused to provide that over the phone. He then said that, without a way to confirm that he had the right/wrong person, I would be liable for the balance. I still refused and told him that, if they had the right person, they would have my address on file and could communicate with me in writing regarding this issue but I was not providing any personal information over the phone.

At the time all I heard in my head was "scam" but now I'm off the phone I'm wondering if my identity has been stolen and someone has run-up student loans in my name. However, how would they then have my cell-phone number?

Verdict: SCAM in order to steal identity.


Never the less, I plan to keep my eye on my credit report.

1 comment:

e said...

Some of these are so transparent, it's ridiculous. Good for you for being suspicious.

In case you're interested, Prepaid Legal offers an ID Theft Shield for $12.95/month. They keep an eye on your credit and alert you when stuff happens. They also assist you legally if your i.d. is stolen.

I think there are also similar services provided by banks and other institutions, but that's the one I use. I have good credit, therefore I'm likely to be a target of identity theft.

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