Identity theft increases, more difficult to prevent

The Federal Trade Commission estimates about 9 million Americans fall victim to identity theft every year. The FBI is doing its best to combat the increasing threat by learning as much as it can about the hackers.

"We're beginning to become better equipped, but it's definitely a situation where we have to play catch-up because it's a very widespread crime," said Justin Feffer, a cyber crimes instructor at the FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development Association.

The Identity Theft Resource Center recently unveiled a few identity theft trends that may affect consumers' credit reports and financial standing.

The center says the identity crime rings will grow, using an increasingly popular tactic called skimming. Skimming is when identity thieves place small card readers in ATMs and other devices to read and capture someone's credit card information.

Always check the credentials and legitimacy of a website before inputing your credit card information. If a cybercriminal gets a hold of your personal details, he or she can use it to purchase items under your name, leaving many consumers with debt and a black mark on their credit report. In these instances, victims may benefit from seeking the help of a credit repair company to help them file a dispute.