Crooks strike rich with ID card you can't cancel

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Shanghai Daily, August 14, 2013
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 ID card

Second-generation ID cards

Stolen second-generation ID cards are much prized by criminals engaged in fraud and money laundering as they cannot be canceled, an investigation has revealed.

These cards don't come with a secret disabling code so remain active even after their rightful owners inform police they are missing, said officials from the household registration management center in Tianjin Municipality, neighboring Beijing.

Online trading in second-generation ID cards has become widespread, Xinhua news agency reported yesterday.

One online card dealer even boasted that all the ID cards he sold were genuine because they were all stolen, said Xinhua.

The only catch for crooks is that they need to get the card of someone who bears a resemblance to them.

The dealer advised would-be customers to choose a card of a lookalike, that way they could deceive others, he said.

Another dealer said cards were priced at 400 yuan (US$65.32), reported Xinhua.

Through this underground market, many stolen ID cards are misused.

One trader said he had bought large numbers of stolen ID cards and then lied to banks that he had been entrusted to help the owners apply for credit cards.

He then sold an ID card and a credit card set for between 300 and 500 yuan.

And criminals attempting to hide their identities to escape police use stolen ID cards to check in to hotels and buy train tickets, Xinhua reported.

Under current laws, someone found guilty of stealing ID cards can be fined no more than 1,000 yuan and detained for up to 10 days.

The second-generation card was introduced in 2004.

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