Just this morning, I spoke to a friend of ours who found fraudulent charges on his debit card. Of course, he was despondent and angry.

"How could this have happened and who did it?" Those were just two of the questions he had, followed by, "now what"?

Over a decade ago my younger sister Carolyn had her identity stolen. It took years to get everything sorted out and to this day she remains overly sensitive and cautious to the point of distraction. Who can blame her. It was a living nightmare!

According to statistics, identity theft is perpetrated on over 15 billion Americans every year, with losses totaling $50 billion. It is considered to be the fastest-growing crime in our country and it's only going to get worse.

The sophistication level of professional identity thieves involved in organized crime continues to grow along with the methods they develop. From individually tailored phishing and vishing scams, to increasingly successful hacks of corporate and government databases, to elaborate networks of botnets designed to hijack millions of computers without any trace, there is an ever-increasing threat to all Americans."- -Identity Theft website

What can you do? There are ways to lessen the chances that you will cross paths with this serious, life-altering crime. The first thing you can do is get educated.

To that end the Siouxland Libraries and the Sioux Falls Police Department have teamed up to present an Identity Theft Prevention program at the Caille Branch library on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, at 7 PM. The program is free and you don't need to register.

For more information call 605-367-8700 or go to Siouxland Libraries online.

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