NORFOLK, Va. - A man put a wrench in thieves' plan when he was home to accept a delivery for seven Samsung Galaxy S8 phones he didn't order. After spending hours investigating what happened, he discovered his social security number was used to open accounts for the seven phones.
Police told him it's not uncommon.
"He said he's aware of a ring that's in the Hampton Roads area that does this as their methodology. Order phones, leave it on the front door step and usually, they come by and steal it and now they have free phones you're on the hook for," said the victim who asked News 3 to hide his identity.
The first step for those who believe they might be a victim of identity theft is to file a police report. Then, call the credit bureau. They automatically put your account on a 90-day alert. If your social security number is used to try and get credit, they have to call you and go through a verification process.
The victim News 3 spoke with said he's thankful his money wasn't stolen, but now he's concerned about his family's safety.
"It's a little unnerving it happened here in the house. That means someone was physically close enough they were going to stop by the home and pick it up off the front stoop," said the victim.
And he's not the only victim. He said since posting about what happened on Nextdoor, other victims have reached out saying the exact same thing happened to them. Seven Samsung phones delivered by Sprint.
Clearly, the detective was right. There is a ring that's doing this. I feel confident knowing the detective knew about it and they're doing their job running it down.
The victim News 3 spoke with said he believes this is all stemming from big data breaches for those who have worked for the government, military or insurance companies that have been hacked. He's thankful he was able to intercept the thieves plan instead of finding out after he got the phone bill.