Berks County Identity Theft Attorney

In today's interconnected online environment we are now able to shop, manage accounts, and make other financial transactions with ease and convenience. One drawback to our continuing technological advancement is that criminals are also becoming increasingly sophisticated. Identity theft has become significantly more common, as roughly 7.5% of households have a consumer who has been victimized.

States With the Most Internet Crimes in 2018

Rank

State

Number of Incidents

1

California

49,031

2

Texas

25,589

3

Florida

23,984

4

New York

18,124

5

Virginia

14,800

6

Washington

10,775

7

Pennsylvania

10,554

Identify Theft in Pennsylvania (§4120)

An identity theft offense is committed when someone has possession of or uses “identifying information of another person” without their knowledge or approval in a manner that is unlawful. When an offender commits the crime multiple times each offense is separate; however, they may be “aggregated in determining the grade of the offense.”

Grading of Offense

If the total amount involved is less than $2,000 it is charged as a first-degree misdemeanor. If the amount is greater than $2,000 it is charged as a third-degree felony. Any offense that involves a “criminal conspiracy” is also charged as a third-degree felony offense. Any third offense is enhanced to a second-degree felony offense. Any offense that involves a victim that is under the age of 18 or more than age 60 is automatically upgraded by one level.

Criminal Conspiracy (§903)

A conspiracy occurs when multiple individuals act together to commit a crime. This means that the parties agree to participate in criminal activity. This applies when a party agrees to provide some form of assistance toward the commission of a crime.

Possession and Use of Unlawful Devices (§4121)

This is a related type of theft that uses a device to interpret, record, and retain confidential data that is encoded on a credit or debit card. This offense can be summarized as using a device that is capable of capturing the information stored on a credit or debit card to use this information to commit fraud. The offense may be committed by merely possessing or selling a device used for these purposes.

Breaches of Personal Data

When computerized personal information such as names, addresses, banking, or credit card information is either inadvertently released or unlawfully accessed it is deemed to be a breach. In 2005, Pennsylvania established the Breach of Personal Information Notification Act. The Act requires entities that store personal information to notify any individuals that may have had their data exposed if a breach occurs.

Penalties Which May Be Imposed

Offense Level

Maximum Imprisonment

Maximum Fine

Second-Degree Felony

10 years

$25,000

Third-Degree Felony

7 years

$15,000

First-Degree Misdemeanor

5 years

$10,000

Restitution for Identity Theft (§1107.1)

In addition to any penalties that are imposed on an offender, the court may require them to make restitution to the victim. This may include compensation for investigating the theft, to resolve any civil actions that were caused, costs associated with correcting credit bureau reports, and more.

Criminal Defense Lawyer in Pennsylvania

Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients that have been charged with criminal offenses. Years of experience have allowed him to develop the skills necessary to effectively defend criminal cases. Those who are seeking aggressive legal representation are encouraged to contact the office for a consultation at (888) 535-3686.

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Attorney Joseph D. Lento has more than a decade of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the Lento Law Firm today! Criminal defense attorney Joseph D. Lento will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations – the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. In Pennsylvania, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout Pennsylvania's 67 counties, including, but not limited to Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Berks, Lancaster, Lehigh, and Northampton County. In New Jersey, attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New Jersey's 21 counties: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren County, In New York, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New York's 62 counties. Outside of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, unless attorney Joseph D. Lento is admitted pro hac vice if needed, his assistance may not constitute legal advice or the practice of law. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, New Jersey, New York, or nationwide should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.

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