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Protecting Your Identity and the Weekend Poll

It takes a special sort of chutzpah to steal the identity of the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. But that's just what happened about a year ago. A thief swiped the handbag belonging to Anna Bernanke, wife of Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, from the back of a cafe chair. A few days later, a check for $900, drawn against their joint checking account, was deposited in a bank account in Hyattsville, according to an account first published on Newsweek's web site. According to a report by the Post's Jerry Markon and Neil Irwin, it was just one episode in what turned out to be a nationwide identity-theft ring.

Holy cow. If it can happen to Ben Bernanke it can happen to anybody. I'm definitely going to tighten up data security around my home. I already shred anything that has a name or a number on it. Next step is to switch credit accounts to online billing, so those monthly statements--each with so-called "courtesy checks" that offer easy access to a high-interest cash withdrawal--don't go astray somewhere in the U.S. mail.

WEEKEND READING: Ted Knutson reports on how you can prevent bureaucratic hassles when you decide to renovate a historic property. And Emma L. Carew has a story that might be summed up in just four words shouted through a bullhorn: "Good morning Tripp family!"

The Weekend Poll


This is a non-scientific user poll. Results are not statistically valid and cannot be assumed to reflect the views of Washington Post users as a group or the general population.

By Elizabeth Razzi  |  August 28, 2009; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Home features , Poll , Weekend Poll  
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Next: We're Messing Up the Mortgage Interest Deduction

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