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San Francisco suspect arrested for identity theft scheme

Sep 02, 2011 Matt Roesly

With help from a tip, San Francisco police arrested a man in charge of an identity theft scheme, The San Francisco Examiner reports. When police investigated the suspect's home, they found a fraudulent credit card embossing machine, a stolen computer, hotel information with credit card number and names, as well as stolen gift cards. Police believe the suspect gathered credit card information from hotel documents, using the embossing machine to create facsimiles of the cards. Police received the tip from the suspect's niece, who was living in the same residence. Over the past year, there were approximately 8,000 cases of credit card and bank fraud in California. According to the Federal Trade Commission, California is ranked third in the United States, behind Florida and Arizona, for per capita identity theft complaints. While new technology such as electronic PIN verification aims to lower such instances in the future, the volume of identity theft and fraud complaints has increased four-fold over the past 10 years. Much of this rise is due to the ease of access to personal information via internet and mobile devices.