Everyone has a legal right to privacy and protection of personal identifying information. Florida laws regarding identity theft uphold this right. But, according to Experian, data breaches and record exposures are increasing.

There are many criminal acts that can fall under the broad category of identity theft. Here are the potential charges an individual may face according to Chapter 817 of the Florida Statutes.

Unlawful use of personal information

 Someone who fraudulently uses another person’s personal information or simply possesses that information with the intent to commit fraud may commit identity theft. This offense requires that the perpetrator not have consent of the owner of the information. Personal identifying information includes someone’s name, date of birth, phone number, driver’s license number and mother’s maiden name. This crime ranges from a third-degree- to a first-degree felony depending on the details.

Illegal use of personal information to harass

 Anyone who obtains identifying information from someone without permission with the intent to harass the individual commits a first-degree misdemeanor.

 Use of a minor’s personal information

 Florida law considers it a second-degree felony to intentionally and fraudulently utilize the personal information of an underage individual without the consent of the child or the parent or guardian. Additionally, it is illegal for a parent or guardian to use personal information of the child without permission.

Ficticious or counterfeit information

 Using or intending to use falsified or fake identification information in order to commit fraud commits a felony, ranging from third-degree to life-felony depending on the circumstances.

Those facing any allegations of identity theft generally find defending against such charges a worthwhile pursuit.