Thursday, July 14, 2011

Thieves and doppelgangers

The other night, I was out and happened to see one of my friends walking a few feet in front of me. I called out to her several times but she didn’t look back at me. A little annoyed, a jogged over to her side and just as I was about to halt her right in her steps, I realized that she wasn’t my friend at all – just someone who looked almost exactly like her. Weird. Embarrassing. Interesting.


Apparently, they do exist. I’ve been told that I look like this person or like that person, yes, it’s annoying. Of course who wants to be compared to another person right?

And then I thought, what if someone actually stole your identity? I saw this movie once (it was a rather fun action movie starring a very prominent Hollywood actor in a rather low-key film) where his identity was stolen by assassins, and I thought: “What if someone stole my identity?” Of course, for the life of me, I can’t figure out why someone would do that, after all, what would be so interesting about little boring ol’ me, but of course, the proposition still does exist. What if someone was walking around looking like me, dressing like me and even having all my documents, all my IDs?

That wouldn’t be too far off, what with the age of the internet and hacking and the ease in obtaining another person’s personal information. I have a friend who has a friend. This friend of my friend has a knack for stalking guys he likes. What’s more is, according to my friend, this friend can actually stalk people whose names he doesn’t even know at the start! I mean, wow, he could really use this talent for something else.

My point is, as long as you have the sense similar to this friend of my friend, then you can obtain virtually any information you want. In fact, identity theft has proliferated in the States like you won’t imagine. One moment you’re living your normal life, the next thing you know, you receive an outrageous bill saying that you’ve been splurging on your credit card 5 states away. Wow. I’ve actually read several reports wherein a person’s documents, all his/her relevant information, even passports and credits cards have been used by persons purporting to him/her, and it took them years to recover their identities.

That’s rather disturbing. Good thing we’re living in the Philippines. But actually, that’s not too far off from happening. Thieves are becoming more and more sophisticated, employing more cunning and wilier tricks to defraud people of their hard-earned cash. ATMs are the usual places to be wary of, but now, memos are circulating to be cautious of gas stations, malls, restaurants – virtually any place you’re going to use your credit card at, because you never know just when your card might get duplicated… and it literally takes just about a second to do it.


Good thing I don’t have a credit card then. I like who I am. I’m not quite willing to give my identity away just yet.

Van Baltao: Post #4

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