By Joshlin Sheridan, Marketing —
Identity theft is rampant in America. Perpetrators of this crime go to extremes to collect money, including targeting identities the elderly and young children. Recently, I heard of a case that shocked me…with one man who took identity theft to an extreme level.
Steven Lynn Ross’ Crimes
This week, Steven Lynn Ross, 67, was indicted by a federal grand jury for attempting to collect disability benefits under his identity, while working under a false one.
Additionally, Ross chose to assume the identities of two different deceased children. One was a toddler who died in a car accident in the 1950s, and the other was a young teenager who died in an airplane crash in the 1960s. Ross opened social security accounts under their names. He used these names to obtain drivers licenses, bank accounts, and passports.
I find it especially shocking that Ross traveled out of the country 22 times with one of the stolen identities. Using these schemes, Ross has allegedly stolen over $360,000 in government benefits. Ross was initially caught when facial recognition software made The Washington State Department of Licensing aware that Ross’s image showed up on several drivers’ license photos.
Preventing Identity Theft
It’s a shame that Ross wasn’t caught sooner, because he’s done so much damage, between the stolen funds and the danger of traveling under a false identity.
IdentityDetect™ is a new technology that can recognize when people are being deceptive about their identity. This online verification tool takes about 1-3 minutes and can accurately catch 9 out of 10 imposters. It asks users to answer questions about themselves. Based on their responses, it applies a scoring algorithm and uses machine learning to determine a credibility score.
This technology could easily be incorporated into application processes for passports, driver’s licenses, and bank cards. By implementing IdentityDetect into more applications, perpetrators like Ross can be stopped in their tracks.