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The Resource Center Identity Theft & Protection | article

While Attempting to Start a New Career, a Vermont Woman Became a Victim of Identity Theft

Every woman wants to feel beautiful, and many turn to the experts to tell them how they can make their dream look a reality. These style professionals may be fashion consultants, make-up artists or even salespeople for your favorite brands. In most cases, these stylists find great joy out of helping someone look and feel like a supermodel. However, even in the world of fashion and beauty, there are some who are not in the industry to help others. In fact, even gorgeous people can turn out to be petty criminals.

An opportunity too good to be true
One Vermont woman learned the hard way that looks aren't everything when the person she trusted to help her build a career selling makeup turned out to be an identity thief. After attending a gathering in the summer of 2008 sponsored by a famous makeup company, this woman had decided she wanted to pursue life as a sales consultant.

Looks can be deceiving
She approached the representative who had organized the gathering to discuss a possible job with the company. Jessica Hood, a 22-year-old Vermont native, was the consultant that this victim had hoped could guide her in the right direction. Hood told the woman that she could help her get into the field of makeup sales, saying that all she needed to do was provide Hood with some personal information to start the application process. This should've been a red-flag for the victim, who willingly gave Hood enough personal information for the consultant to open up accounts in the woman’s name, and ruin her credit score.

Instead of a bright future, the victim faced financial ruin
The victim only found out about the identity theft after she was contacted by a debt collection agency, informing her that she owed several banks and stores thousands of dollars. After the woman contacted authorities, a month-long investigation took place to determine who was making a mess of the victim's credit report.

By the time authorities figured out what had happened, Hood had already done enough damage to the woman's credit score that would prevent her from doing any kind of borrowing for a long time. Had the victim been enrolled in a credit monitoring service, she may have been able to stop Hood before she caused too much harm.