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If you see my identity, please return to this address

Joyce Walter reflects on being a victim of identity theft
ReflectiveMoments_JoyceWalter
Reflective Moments by Joyce Walter

Would the disreputable creeps who stole my identity, please give it back.

My identity is not something with which to trifle. I have spent years creating my identity, and in the space of no time at all, it has been taken from me, and is doing, who knows what, right now, all under the guise of it being me.

Not only is this shameful and illegal behaviour on the part of the guilty, it is disconcerting to think I was such an easy, perhaps even a gullible target. But how did these individuals get interested in me in the first place?

When someone did interesting things with my old credit card back in May, I seriously thought there was just a glitch in the system that the credit card company was tardy in delivering supposed new and improved cards, even without being asked to do so.

When the new card was finally delivered and it worked fine every time, I must have let down my guard and opened a door somewhere that allowed the creeps to enter without my knowledge.

It wasn’t until my laptop was taken over on a recent afternoon that I suspected something nefarious was taking place right there before my eyes. Someone was indeed controlling the computer and I sat there in horror, thinking I might be losing all the files I hadn’t backed up over the last few weeks.

Then my cellphone rang and it was Nick or Erik, depending on how quickly he gave me his name. He explained that he would immediately help me get rid of the hackers and unwelcome intruders into my life.

This guy knew more about me than I cared to share with any stranger, or even a close friend. When I realized he wasn’t working for the company that supplies the care program for my computer, my friendly demeanour disappeared. In fact it raged when he wouldn’t stop talking long enough for me to ask questions.

And the rage exploded more when I was advised it would cost me in the $2,000 range to supply 14 layers of security to deflect anyone wanting to know how they might interact in my life. But, Nick or maybe it was Erik, assured me this would be a one-time-only charge, and please get my credit card ready.

Not surprisingly, he knew all about my previous credit card problem and wanted to know if I would be using a new card.

At that point I asked him to hang on, and using another phone I called the fraud department at my credit card company. When the kind man in that department heard my story he advised me to shut off my computer and to hang up the other phone. Then he did some checking and declared I was the victim of identity theft.

Nick or Erik called back to talk to me, only to be told by Housemate that I was talking to the police and couldn’t come to the phone. This guy had the nerve to ask why I would be talking to the police (even though I wasn’t) and was told that I thought he was pulling a scam. He hung up.

But he called several more times even though I refused the calls, and he didn’t answer when I called his number. I wonder why?

And so, I have a new set of cards and a few flash drives bearing all my backed up files and photos.

However, what I want most is to have my stolen identity returned. And even more, I want Nick, Erik or their friends, Rick and Dick to stop calling me and nosing around in my business.

Shame on them and everyone like them.

Joyce Walter can be reached at ronjoy@sasktel.net

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the position of this publication.