Identity theft is a form of fraud commonly (but not always) committed for financial gain. The following discussion argues that identity theft involves the illicit use of personally identifying information tied a person's legal identity: that is, the information used to establish his or her personhood in the eyes of the law, including the birth certificate. It is essential to recognize the nature of identity theft in the modern world, especially the key role played by information technology and the Internet in its execution. There has been rapid development in national legislation in the last two decades to tackle identity theft. However, the development of international legislation and cooperation to tackle identity theft at a transnational level is still in its infancy.

Identity thieves typically use ...

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