TRUST Seminar: Need Credit? No Identity? No Problem!

I’m doing the TRUST Seminar at Berkeley this week. Here’s the info and abstract.

Date: Thursday, October 18, 2007
Time: 1:00 PM (lunch will be served)
Location: 540 A/B Cory Hall

ABSTRACT: In synthetic identity theft cases, an impostor creates a new identity using some information from a victim that is enhanced with fabricated personal information. For instance, the impostor may use a real Social Security number, but a falsified name and address. Since this synthetic identity is based on some real information, and sometimes supplemented with artfully created credit histories, it can be used to apply for new credit accounts. In a currently-ongoing case, two men alleged to have used this tactic applied for and obtained 250 credit cards and amassed $760,000 in charges. Experts following fraud trends claim that synthetic identity theft is a growing problem, and is responsible for massive losses among financial services institutions. How can fabricated person obtain credit? This presentation will explore the synthetic identity theft problem, its roots in credit authentication, and possible approaches to reducing its incidence and severity.