At Least The Data ID Thieves Have About You Is Wrong

from the small-comfort dept

It's not likely to be very comforting to the 145,000 or so people who had their personal data gift-wrapped and handed to identity thieves by ChoicePoint, but it turns out that many people who have seen their personal files from the company note that they're riddled with errors, including wrong addresses, relatives who don't exist, suggestions of criminal activity in places where they'd never been and (in at least one case) a claim that the person reading the report had actually died thirty years ago. Of course, the best part is that if you ask ChoicePoint how to fix these errors, the answer is "sorry, you can't do that." Apparently, they want to make sure that future identity thieves have access to the same false info too.

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  1. identicon
    Tim M, 9 Mar 2005 @ 9:31pm

    Who wants ChoicePoint CEO's home number?

    From ATL's "Creative Loafing" rag...
    Who wants ChoicePoint CEO's home number?

    ChoicePoint is one of the largest distributors of personal information in the world. The company sells its dossiers (it has one on virtually every man, woman and child in America) to insurance companies, businesses conducting background checks, and the federal government.
    ChoicePoint also recently sold personal information - including Social Security numbers, driver's license numbers, home addresses and phone numbers - of at least 145,000 people to a Nigerian identity thief. Whoops!
    Because CEOs of large companies are sometimes hard to get in touch with, we thought that those victims whose identities were stolen would have an easier time voicing their concerns if they had ChoicePoint CEO Derek V. Smith's home phone number and address.
    We admit, publishing someone's personal info without his or her permission is kind of rude. But selling such info is how Smith makes a living, so he can't be opposed to it, right? After all, Smith earns about $17 million annually in salary, bonuses, stock options and other compensation.
    ChoicePoint's logic for selling the records is that the data is public record (aside from credit reports, for which an individual must grant permission for ChoicePoint to access). Well, the info we're about to give is public, too. It sort of takes on a different sheen, though, when it's lumped together for public consumption, huh, Derek?
    So here it is, Smith's home number: 770-667-5775. (If you'd rather write him, his address is 15120 N. Valleyfield Road, Alpharetta, GA, 30004.)
    If you do call or write him, be sure to wish him a belated happy birthday. Using Web searches, we found Smith was born in February 1955.
    Incidentally, we also unearthed, in public records, the floor plan of Smith's and his wife Lisa's 9,223-square-foot home, which was last appraised at $1.4 million.
    Just thought you'd like to know.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 10 Mar 2005 @ 2:14pm

    Re: Who wants ChoicePoint CEO's home number?

    The number has been changed.

    Apparently Smith does not like people having his personal information without his permission.

    Maybe people getting his information caused him a bit of inconvenience. Unfortunately, his selling of people’s information costs people much more than that every day.

    At least we still have his address, and that should make him sleep well at night.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Eric B, 15 Apr 2005 @ 12:59am

    Re: Who wants ChoicePoint CEO's home number?

    I just was refused a job at a very large bank last week because of Choicepoints info. I reviewed the info on the report and they have me listed for being convicted of felonies!!! I have never ever been convincted of a felony. They cost me my job offer and I am truely upset and angered by this. I do not know what to do about this since they say they cannot correct these errors. They can create them but cannot fix them? What? Wow!!! I do not know what to do. Can anyone help me? I am just baffled!! Why is this company allowed to keep operating? This is infuriating that they can affect so many peoples lives and think they have no reposibility in it. What is wrong with his picture? Something has to be done!!! If anyone has any suggestions for me please email me. Please help!!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    been there, 13 Nov 2005 @ 6:59am

    Re: Who wants ChoicePoint CEO's home number?

    I was also refused about every job out there. Because of false convictions and warrants and also a suspended liscense because of these accusations. it has been 5 yrs and i finally got it almost straightened out. It is very upsetting to see this happen to others , i know first hand how painful this is. it can make a big difference in salary. i had a job lined up making $60,000 yr and lost it due to the ID theft and during the last five yrs i've been off the books or working petty jobs just to pay rent. What i recommend that has work for me is to: talk to your county clerks office the supervisor, and pull up ypur records if you have a warrant your liscense will be suspended.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Nov 2005 @ 8:22pm

    Re: Who wants ChoicePoint CEO's home number?

    You can sue "libel"

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Anne M Ggray, 4 Jan 2007 @ 10:57am

    Choicepoints/background checks

    Choicepoints reported me as a convicted felon "sexual assault on a child" based on a PARTIAL name and DOB match....their response ...."we have thirty days to correct the report"....they DON"T CARE WHAT THEY DO TO PEOPLE!!!!!!!...they are rude and unproffessional and sloppy in their reporting and it affects peoples lifes.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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