Filipino Teacher Falls Prey to Identity Theft After Posting Government ID on Facebook

I saw this terrible news on TV Patrol last night. A Pinoy public teacher is now in huge debt after becoming a victim of identity theft -- and it's all because of one mistake that he committed on Facebook several months ago.

Facebook Identity Theft
Mark Joseph Lontok now owes three banks a total of Php 800,000 after an identity thief successfully got loans under his name. Every month, around Php 9,000 is deducted from his salary to cover deferred payments and interests. So sad. He could have invested in real estate with that amount.

Facebook Identity Theft
All photos in this post are courtesy of ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs

So how was the perpetrator able to dupe those banks into believing that he's Mark, enough to convince them to process such big loans?

Facebook Identity Theft
Well, he was able to present what appeared to be legit IDs of Mark Joseph Lontok; One of which was a forged Professional Regulation Commission card for teachers.

Facebook Identity Theft

The suspect, shown in the photo above, got hold of a clear copy of Mark's official government ID after the teacher posted photos of the card publicly on his Facebook account. All the thief had to do was to superimpose his profile shot on the ID and to make copies, which he submitted to the banks.

Facebook Identity Theft

I know! If only Mark was more discerning about what he posts on Facebook. But then, it's really easy to make that oversight -- especially these days, when it's so tempting to share so much about our private lives on social networking sites. NBI Anti-Fraud and Action Division warns, though, that we should be more careful in disclosing delicate information online and be more vigilant about our keeping our privacy when participating in social media.

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