MASSILLON, Ohio--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--SubscriberWise®, a leading provider of analytics driven subscriber decision management technology and the nation’s first issuing consumer reporting agency for the communications industry, announced today that the company is amplifying its plea for Congress to expedite its effort to draft and pass a legislative initiative that would mandate the appropriate federal agencies to create an index of child social security numbers that would be matched to dramatically reduce child identity theft and fraudulent child consumer reports.
“I met with Detective Curtiss Ricker who is handling the criminal investigation”
“Today there’s a dangerous technology gap that exists within federal agencies that allows a child’s social security number to be stolen with relative ease,” said David Howe, president of SubscriberWise and a national authority on child identity theft and predatory behavior in call center environments. “Evidence from an entire decade of fraud cases that originated in the call center environment strongly demonstrate the overwhelming majority of individuals committing these crimes are closely related (usually a parent) to the child. The offenders generally have easy access to sensitive information, including the child’s full SSN: (http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20110113005921/en/U.S.-Creditors-Criminally-Duped-SubscriberWise-Chief-Exposes).”
“Sadly – and contrary to the FTC publication on safeguarding a child’s identity which ironically fails to implicate parents for child identity theft - the most frequent perpetrator is, in reality, the child’s own parent(s): http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/pdf-0010-child-identity-theft.pdf
"From my perspective, and having confronted hundreds of parental identity thieves over the course of 10 years, the fact that one or both parents are most often the perpetrator(s) this point alone should compel Congress to act quickly to create a secure child index to protect these vulnerable children against this otherwise easy-to-commit and rarely prosecuted exploitation of the child.
"In other words, it’s time to leverage technology for the benefit, not the determent, of children around this nation. Congress needs to get to work immediately,” declared Howe.
“Last week I engaged Congressman Bob Gibbs’ office (http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/09/prweb12163889.htm) with a request that he urgently introduce a bill to protect children from predatory child identity theft that often goes unnoticed,” continued Howe. “One week later I’m engaged in another – possible synthetic – child fraud that is now in the hands of law enforcement: Massillon Police Department; Case No: 14-18037.
"I met with Detective Curtiss Ricker who is handling the criminal investigation,” continued Howe. “And while it’s rare for MCTV to pursue a criminal complaint, there are circumstances when we must contact law enforcement. Existing Federal Trade Commission Red Flag rules’ mandate our action when there’s suspected child fraud and when the suspect fails to cooperate.
"Regarding this specific case, I acknowledge and appreciate the engagement, concern, and professionalism provided me by Detective Ricker and the Massillon Police Department,” commented Howe. “Not only did the detective carefully and thoroughly review every shred of evidence that I provided, he also listened to every word contained in the audio recording between the suspect and the call center CSR. In addition, Detective Ricker immediately provided the report number so that I could notify TransUnion and the other repositories of the suspected fraud.
"With the required police report, TransUnion's fraud department can launch its own investigation. Based on the findings of law enforcement and the repositories own investigation, a ‘block’ of the child’s fraudulent consumer report can be placed to prevent additional negative consequence to the child and others including creditors.
"And this is exactly the objective we have for Congress to mandate at the federal level to protect every child’s SSN and identity before a crime is perpetrated,” emphasized Howe.
“Over the past decade, I’ve been routinely and regularly alerting law enforcement, the national repositories, and educating parents about the dangers and consequences of stealing a child’s identity,” commented Howe. “After hundreds and hundreds of child frauds, it’s apparent to me that the effort is not impacting the problem. Moreover, SubscriberWise simply cannot solve the problem of child SSN fraud alone.
"We will protect children only if we collaborate together,” Howe stated. “Congress must take up this very urgent cause and begin the process immediately. I’m hopeful the Congressman and others are diligently working on a child protection bill so that it can be quickly introduced and sent to the appropriate committee while children are being exploited daily.”
SubscriberWise’s proposed ‘Child Master Index’ would alert creditors of a confirmed child social security number at the time of application origination. With an instant alert that the number matched is registered to a child, creditors would immediately stop the application process and require positive identification with government issued photo id. The process would protect the creditor from a potential fraudulent account. Most important, the technology would protect the child. The system would minimize synthetic identity thefts by reducing the frequency of child-based consumer credit reports. It’s reasonable to assume perpetrators would curb their attempt to defraud creditors and exploit children as awareness and education about a child-SSN index proliferated.
SubscriberWise® launched as the first U.S. issuing consumer reporting agency exclusively for the cable industry in 2006. In 2009, SubscriberWise and TransUnion announced a joint marketing agreement (http://www.subscriberwise.com/TransUnionJointMarketing.pdf) for the benefit of America’s independent cable operators. Today SubscriberWise is a risk management preferred-solutions provider for the National Cable Television Cooperative. SubscriberWise technology has prevented thousands of child identity thefts and uncovered the misuse of personally identifiable information for operators everywhere.
SubscriberWise contributions to the communications industry are today quantified in the tens of millions of dollars annually.
SubscriberWise is a U.S.A. federally registered trademark of the SubscriberWise Limited Liability Co.