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Wisconsin

Wisconsin State Victim Resources:

Attorney General
Phone: (608) 266-1221
www.doj.state.wi.us

Office of Privacy Protection
Phone: (608) 224-5163
www.privacy.wi.gov

Wisconsin Coalition
http://cwagwisconsin.org/elder-law-center/wi-identity-theft-coalition/

Agencies that offer assistance to IDT victims:

Legal Action of Wisconsin, Inc.                                                                    
Program Phone: (414) 278-7777   
Legal Assistance: (414) 278-7722   
http://www.legalaction.org

Wisconsin Judicare, Inc.                                                                           
Program Phone: (715) 842-1681   
Legal Assistance: (800) 472-1638   
http://www.judicare.org/

Security Freeze Law:

All Wisconsin consumers are allowed to place security freezes on their consumer credit reports to prevent others from opening new accounts in their names. Such a freeze enables the consumer to prevent anyone from looking at his/her credit file for the purpose of granting credit unless the consumer chooses to allow a particular business look at the information. To request a freeze, an identity theft victim must request one in writing by certified mail to the credit reporting agencies. Credit reporting agencies may charge $10 for each security freeze, removal of a security freeze, or temporary lifting of a freeze for a period of time.

However, victims of identity theft with a valid police report may not be charged.

The reporting agency must place the freeze within five business days after receiving the request, and within ten days must send a written confirmation of the freeze and provide the consumer with a unique personal identification number or password to be used by the consumer when providing authorization for the release of his credit for a specific party or period of time. Requests for a temporary unlocking of the freeze must be completed within three business days.
Statute: §100.54: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=100.54

How to Place a Security Freeze in Wisconsin:

http://consumersunion.org/research/state_security_freeze_laws/#WI

Mandatory Police Report Law for Identity Theft Victims:

Law enforcement agencies are required to take a police report from people in their jurisdiction who believe that their personal identifying information or a personal identification document is in the possession of another person, or has been used or attempted to be used. If a law enforcement agency concludes that it does not have jurisdiction to investigate the violation, it must inform the individual which law enforcement agency may have jurisdiction. The officer must give a copy of the report to the individual who has made the request.
Statute: §943.201: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=943.201

Identity Theft Passport Law:

No State law at this time.

Identity Theft Laws:

It is unlawful to intentionally use or attempt to use any personal identifying information or personal identification documents of an individual without that individual’s consent; by representing that he/she is the individual; acting with the authorization or consent of the individual; or that the information or document belongs to him/her in order to:

  • Obtain credit, money, goods, services, employment, or any other thing of value or benefit.
  • Avoid civil or criminal process or penalty.
  • Harm the reputation, property, person or estate of the individual.
  • Violations are a class H felony, punishable by up to six years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Personal identifying information includes any of the following: an individual’s name, address or telephone number; driver’s license number; Social Security number; employer, employee number, or place of employment; taxpayer ID number; DNA profile; mother’s maiden name; depository account number, credit card number, ATM card password, telephone service identifier, or any other account number, password or electronic identifier that can be used to obtain money, goods, services, an account transfer, or anything else of value or benefit; or fingerprint, voiceprint, retina iris image, or any other unique physical characteristic.

A personal identification document includes any of the following: a document containing personal identifying information; an individual’s card or plate, if it can be used, alone or in conjunction with another access device, to obtain money, goods, services, or any other thing of value or benefit, or if it can be used to initiate a transfer of funds; or any other device that is unique to, assigned to, or belongs to an individual and that is  intended to be used to access services, funds, or benefits of any kind to which the individual is entitled.
Statute: §943.201: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=943.201

It is also a class H felony to use an identification document or identifying information of an entity, such as a business, charity, union, or any other organization, without its consent, to obtain credit, money, goods, services, employment, or any other thing of value or benefit; or to harm the reputation, property, person, or estate of the entity.
Statute: §943.203: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=943.203

Other Related Laws:

Payment Cards

It is unlawful for any person to:

  • Obtain a financial transaction card, such as a credit card or debit card, from another without the cardholder’s consent.
  • Knowingly make a false statement respecting his/her identity for the purpose of procuring the issuance of a financial transaction card.
  • Receive an illegally obtained financial transaction card with intent to use it or sell it or transfer it to another person. If a person possesses financial transaction cards issued in the names of two or more other persons, it is prima facie evidence the person acquired them in violation of this law.
  • Receive a financial transaction card that the person knows to have been lost, stolen, or delivered by mistake to the wrong cardholder, and retain possession of the card with intent to use it, sell it, or transfer it to another person other than the issuer or cardholder. Possession of such a card for more than seven days is prima facie evidence that this law has been violated.
  • Sell a financial transaction card other than the user.
  • Buy a financial transaction card other than from the issuer.
  • Obtain control over a financial transaction card as security for a debt with intent to defraud the issuer or any other person.
  • Receive a financial transaction card issued in the name of another person which he or she has reason to know was obtained in violation of this law.

Violations are a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to nine months in jail and/or a fine up to $10,000. However, a person who receives a financial transaction card issued in the name of another person that he or she has reason to know was obtained illegally is guilty of a class I felony, punishable by up to three years and six months in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.
Statute: §943.41: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=943.41

It is illegal for a person, with intent to defraud the issuer, a person or organization providing money, goods, services or anything else of value, or any other person to:

  • Use a financial transaction card obtained fraudulently, or which the person knows is forged, expired, or revoked
  • Represent without the consent of the cardholder that the person is the holder of a specified card.

Violations are a Class A misdemeanor if the value of the money, goods, services or property illegal obtained does not exceed $2500. If the value is between $2500 and $5000 in a single transaction or within six months, it is a Class I felony. If the value is between $5000 and $10,000, it is a class H felony, and a Class G felony (punishable by up to ten years in prison and/or up to a $25,000 fine) if it is over $10,000.

Any person who represents that he or she is a financial or representative of a financial institution for the purpose of obtaining or recording a person’s personal identifying information is guilty of a Class H felony, including up to six years in jail and a $10,000 fine.
Statute: §943.82: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=943.82

Security Breach

State law requires businesses operating in the state and state and local government agencies that maintain or license computerized data that include consumers’ personal information to notify consumers when their personal information is compromised during a security breach, putting them at risk of identity theft. The law requires the business or governmental entity to notify an individual whenever personal information held by the business or governmental entity is acquired by an unauthorized person. However, no notice is required if the unauthorized acquisition does not create a material risk of identity theft or fraud, or if the information was acquired in good faith by an employee or agent and is used for a lawful purpose of the entity.

Consumers must be notified within a reasonable time, not to exceed 45 days after the entity learns of the unauthorized acquisition, but notification can be delayed at the request of law enforcement. The notice must be provided by a mail or by a method that the entity has previously used to communicate with the subject of the information. Upon written request of the person whose information was acquired, the entity must also identify the nature of the personal information acquired. If an entity cannot determine the mailing address of the person whose information was acquired, and if the entity has not previously communicated with that person, it must give notice in a manner that is reasonably calculated to provide notice. Such methods might include notice in the newspaper or on television or radio. In addition, if the breach affects more than 1000 people, the consumer reporting agencies must also be notified.

Personal information means an individual’s first name or first initial and his/her last name, in combination with and linked to any one or more of the following data elements, if the element is not publicly available information and is not encrypted, redacted, or altered in a manner that renders the element unreadable: Social Security number; driver’s license or Wisconsin identification card number; a financial account number, credit or debit card number, or any security code, access code, or password that would permit access to the individual’s financial account; DNA profile; or unique biometric data, including fingerprint, voice print, retina or iris image, or any other unique physical representation.
Statute: §134.98: http://nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&d=stats&jd=134.98

 

Information gathered from sources including Identity Theft Resource Center and Identity Crime in partnership with International Association of Chiefs of Police and Bank of America.