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Resources for Law Enforcement

For Law Enforcement

Resources:

  • Most states have laws requiring law enforcement agencies to take a police report of identity theft and provide a copy of that report to the victim. To become familiar with any obligations you may be bound by, click on your state on the map.
  • The Federal Trade Commission’s ID theft database statistics can be found at www.ftc.gov/sentinel . Your agency might want to become a member of the Sentinel program which helps law enforcement to identify crime trends and patterns.
  • The International Association of Chiefs of Police has a website called Identity Crime designed to help consumers and law enforcement combat identity crimes. On the site you will find information tailored for law enforcement including: Identity Crime: An Overview, Prevention, Victim Assistance, Investigation and Resource Sharing.
  • Our Resource Map may help you refer victims to services. 

Law Enforcement Training Course on Identity Theft

LEO The Identity Theft Advocacy Network of Colorado, Coordinated by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, has created a training module which contacts materials designed specifically for Law Enforcement Agencies and includes: an overview of Identity Theft, related statutes, investigative techniques, demonstrations, and more.

Highlights Include:

  • Data Breach Response
  • Bit Coins use by ID thieves
  • Interstate tracking of suspects
  • Support options for victims
  • How to get information from the IRS
  • How Patrol can ID Medical ID Theft suspects
  • Collecting gift cards when executing a search warrant
  • Court Order to Produce Records vs. Search Warrant
  • What Traffic Officers can do to reduce impact of ID Theft
  • What a S.A.R. will show about ID Theft or Fraud
  • How to use IC3 and the Sentinel Report to track trends and potential suspects

For more information or to request a copy of this training, please contact Hazel Heckers at the Colorado Bureau of Investigation Identity Theft and Fraud Investigations Unit at 303-239-4649, or email hazel.heckers@state.co.us. Training material also available for Victim Advocates, Department of Human Services, community groups, crime prevention and more.

Communicating with Victims:

The Identity Theft Resource Center offers guidelines to law enforcement for communication with victims:

When a victim contacts law enforcement, your agenda as an investigator may be different than the victim’s. Law enforcement agencies who are successful realize that by developing a relationship with a victim, he or she becomes an asset to the investigation. The key is communication and listening to a victim’s concerns while gathering information for the case.

  1. Outline the purpose for the meeting or call: You are here to gather the details of the case, any documents they may have, and to answer any questions they may have about clearing their name or about law enforcement’s handling of an identity theft case.
  2. Go through your intake form; get all the information you need.
  3. In cases of criminal ID theft, help the victim to secure the necessary paperwork to get a Letter of Clearance. See ITRC Fact Sheet 110 on criminal identity theft.
  4. Tell victims what it is like behind the scenes of a fraud investigation and the facts — that the case will take time, and why.
  5. Information a victim might want to know includes:
    • What are the steps law enforcement must follow to prove this case?
    • How is evidence gathered, stored and presented to the court? Victims need to know that papers they submit may not be considered legal evidence and why.
    • What are your procedures from this point forward? What are law enforcement’s priorities on the case?
    • How many cases are you handling right now? This gives victims an idea of how much time you can dedicate to their case.
    • How long can investigations take?
    • Will you remain the primary investigator on the case? A victim wants to know who to contact.
    • What should victims do if they get more information that may help or get another collection notice? Should they call you, email, or mail a copy of the information?
    • How soon will it be until they can get a hard copy of the police report? What are the procedures for getting a report?
    • What can victims be doing now? Is there something they can do to move things along faster? Is there any action they might take that would harm the case?
    • What are the chances of getting the criminal? If you don’t think this case can be solved, tell the victim so and help him/her reset priorities — clearing his/her name and credit history.