Having your identity stolen for credit card fraud is bad enough, but imagine if your identity theft resulted in the theft of something much more valuable: your home.
Several cases have emerged of so-called mortgage fraud, according to NetworkWorld. Thieves steal or create false identity documents, then purchase common property transfer documents from a stationary store.
Then it’s just a matter of forging the signature and using the fake ID to lodge the property transfer with the authorities, and the house is transferred from its rightful owner to the thieves.
The thieves then use their title to the property to take out a home loan which they don’t repay, leaving the bank out of pocket and a nice legal question when they go to repossess the home and encounter its surprised rightful owners.
The FBI says while this form of identity fraud is not common at the moment, it is “pervasive and growing.”