Identity thieves take thefts a step further with 'doxing'



ORLANDO, Fla. - WFTV learned some identity theft victims are also being harassed and threatened by strangers who looked them up the Internet.

It's called "doxing" and Channel 9's Karla Ray found out it has forced one Orlando city commissioner to go out of her way to protect her money and her home.

Whenever Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan gets online, she knows someone might be watching.

"Then I became aware last month of this new thing called doxing," she said.

Sheehan said she was notified by investigators in Houston that hackers began doxing her, posting all of her personal information online and encouraging others to harass her.

"Everything you own, your bank accounts, everything, and they can use that to cyberterrorize you," said Sheehan.

Jaime Halscott with Unbreakable IT in Orlando said he has seen a big increase of doxing complaints over the past year.

"With the advent of social media, it's become so much easier for someone to take that information, post it and have someone use it," said Halscott.

Halscott said most information hackers are after is found on social media pages, but he also said some hackers go dumpster diving for bank or Social Security numbers.

He said it's a good idea to shred everything that has personal information on it.

Sheehan said she has gone one step further by taking out identity insurance.

"Everybody has to be careful," she said. "I just have to be extra careful, because they're encouraging people to do things to me now."

Sheehan believes someone anonymous may be behind her doxing incident, but experts told WFTV that often times, upset exes sell personal information to hackers.