Ramifications of car being stolen with drivers license inside?

What is the worst that could happen if my car were to be stolen with my drivers license sitting on the dashboard? Could that lead to identity theft or some other fraud?

Details: I’m in Texas, so my DL has my full name, address, DL #, and photo. No Social Security number.

My address and name aren’t exactly unknown info - they have these old-fangled things called “phone books” that post this - but would the combo of DL # and VIN # (which is etched onto my car) plus the insurance card in the glove box give someone access to do something they otherwise couldn’t?
(Other than drive my stolen car around, I guess … :slight_smile: )

Nothing? Nobody? Does that mean it’s safe for me to leave me drivers license in my car? (Knowing this place, if it’s a bad idea, a zillion Dopers would be posting “NNNOOOOOO!!! Don’t do eeeet, you idiot!”

Probably death row in Texas for one or more crimes you did not actually commit.


They can use your driver’s licence for ID. Even with a picture, someone who looks remotely like you would get away with it. It’s the same as leaving your drivers license around for someone to use in any other circumstance.

Yes, but without my credit cards or anything else, what would they use the ID for, other than getting into bars? Is there anything they can do with just my basic contact info and photo that could screw me over somehow?

Yes, lots presuming there is a strong resemblance. Domestic plane travel under your name for criminal purposes. Get reckless driving tickets in your name. Use it as the basis to establish a full new identity as you. The driver’s license is the defacto national id card in the U.S. The only thing better for identity fraud is a passport and most people don’t carry those around with them at home. They don’t need your current credit cards. Identity thieves can get their (well your) own later after they have established a new records trail with the driver’s license as the foundation for that. Once you have that and a forged birth certificate or even a copy of the real one that they may now be able to get, they are free to apply for anything as you.

Theoretically, they could also sell it to an illegal immigrant for use in obtaining employment. Beyond reckless driving tickets, if there is a strong resemblance, they could give it to a law enforcement officer if they get arrested and are worried about warrants and such. I guess this all falls into stealing your identity, though.

Since it doesn’t have your SSN, I think that could make the identity theft more difficult but not impossible. They would need the number to get credit cards in your name, etc. so maybe that is some consolation. W/O your SSN it also wouldn’t have much value helping an illegal immigrant get employment in your name either. At least in a job where they would get a paycheck as opposed to being paid in cash.

A coworker had a guy get his DL information, not the actual DL. The criminal made a phony ID and used it in check cashing scams. The guy panicked and left it at one place. The investigating officer from a different jurisdiction never thought it was my coworker. Beside the fact that he’s a cop, the pictures didn’t come close to matching (different race) and the DL was an obvious fake.