Law enforcement seek out new ways to fight identity theft

Published: Jul. 25, 2013 at 10:03 PM EDT|Updated: Nov. 14, 2013 at 11:03 PM EST
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Paige Hanson
Paige Hanson
Law enforcement personnel at the Identity theft training class.
Law enforcement personnel at the Identity theft training class.

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Federal Trade Commission says identity theft has been the number one consumer crime in the US for 13 years in a row. Police are doing their best to fight the problem but solutions are hard to find.

Investigators from Kentucky and southern Indiana got some got hands on training Thursday that could help protect consumers. A crime hitting people as hard and fast as identity theft is automatically a big deal to police.

So when a national identity theft protection company started going around the country offering free training, Louisville Metro Police jumped at the opportunity. The training was held Thursday at LMPD's Training Academy on Taylor Boulevard, but law enforcement from both sides of the river filled the classroom.

Experts from Lifelock, the company that offered the seminar, showed investigators the latest tools and techniques identity thieves are using to steal credit card information. A process, that they say, can be shockingly easy using hand held devices called skimmers.

"This device can hold up to a thousand numbers," said Paige Hanson, LifeLock's manager of educational programs. "So if you have ever given your credit card to let's say a waiter or a waitress, and they step away and you don't see your card, all they have to do is swipe the credit card in this. And it stores your credit card information. You can buy, sell, trade that online."

Kentucky ranks 39th in the nation for identity theft cases; Indiana was ranked 33rd.

Hanson said 22 different law enforcement agencies show up for the free training which tells her that police are searching for tools and investigative techniques to fight the growing identity theft problem.

To learn ways to protect yourself against identity theft click here.

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