News & Resources

Florida hospital worker jailed for identity theft

Aug 03, 2013 Dave King

While most people go to the hospital worried about a medical condition, it appears as though consumers now have to be concerned about identity theft.

According to the South Florida Business Journal, a former employee of Boca Raton Regional Hospital was recently sentenced to 18 months in jail for stealing patient records and identity theft.

The theft of personal information can be a damaging crime, especially if thieves open up lines of credit. To help defend against identity theft, short term lenders need to be sure strong ID verification procedures are in place to ensure people taking out loans are who they say they are.

One of the biggest worries when people have their identities stolen should be their consumer credit scores. Oftentimes, criminals take out loans and open credit cards without repaying any of the debt.

In the short term, this can lead to significant damage to a credit score, Barry Paperno, community manager for Credit.com, said.

"Long term, there should be no damage to your credit from ID theft," he said. "But in the short run, you could lose more than 100 points from your score and not regain all of them until the fraudulent credit information is removed from your credit report, which could take weeks, and in some complex cases even months."