Identity thief stole Lismore woman’s profile

IT was Lismore resident Olive Martin’s friends who alerted her to the fake Facebook profile that had been created with her profile picture under the name ‘Jan Rose’.

Not only did the identity thief steal her picture, but also trawled through Ms Martin’s friends list, adding contacts and asking them personal questions about their families and trying to get them interested in various promotional offers.

She said the experience left her feeling angry and unnerved.

“I only found out about the scammer who stole my profile pic and cover photo because my Facebook friends told me about it,” she said.

“The scammer had been sending friend requests to people on my friends list.

“The scammer called themself Jan Rose.

“They were sending private messages to my friends asking how their families are and trying to get them interested in so called ‘promotional offers’ or chances to win money.”

Ms Martin said fortunately, her friends reported ‘Jan Rose’ and Facebook deleted the profile.

“When I found out someone was using my image and trying to manipulate people, I felt very angry.

“It’s unethical and damaging to use someone else’s image to deceive people or fulfil any kind of agenda.”

Identity crime costs Australia upwards of $1.6 billion each year, according to the Attorney-General’s Department.

The majority, around $900m, is lost by individuals through credit card fraud, identity theft and scam.

The Australian Federal Police website says identity crime continues to be a key enabler of serious and organised crime.

Note: The victim has asked us to use the pseudonym Olive Martin as she’s concerned publishing her actual name, as it appears on her social media pages, could promote her as a potential victim of identity theft again.