It’s bad enough when ID thieves steal your persona, but what happens when they use your information to create an entirely different person? A fake person? Bankrate has an article about detecting and protecting yourself from this type of scam. It’s called “synthetic identity fraud.” From Bankrate:
Synthetic fraud is quickly becoming the more common type of identity fraud, surpassing “true-name” identity fraud, which corresponds to actual consumers. In 2005, ID Analytics reported that synthetic identity fraud accounted for 74 percent of the total dollars lost by U.S. businesses to ID fraud and 88 percent of all identity fraud “events” — for example, new account openings and address changes.
Sythetic ID fraud could affect your credit, and debt collectors might come after you based on your SSN, ignoring that a ficticious name was used.