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Identity theft impacts 8.3 million Americans every year. Hi, I'm Penn State head coach Bill O'Brien… Or am I? Your personal information can be taken from you in a moment of carelessness. Your credit, your finances, and even your reputation can be taken from you in a single act. I'm living proof.

You may know me from my work with the New England Patriots. But you may also know me from the time someone decided to use the personal information I left carelessly unguarded to steal my identity, apply for the Penn State job, and then take the job using my name and a local actor bearing some resemblance to me. This violated my very person, and has threatened my career.

Note: I may be laying low about this in public.

"Tomorrow night, I'll get a fax of our signees. I already have a pretty good idea of who they're going to be. Again, it's really more about the Patriots and making sure we're ready for today's practice, tomorrow's meetings and Sunday's game. So it's day-to-day."

But trust me, this is a surprise to me because I have no idea what these people are asking me about. It is terrifying, since I have done no recruiting for Penn State whatsoever. I haven't even been in State College since I was 23 years old. This is the dream where you show up to school naked for a test you have not studied for, and it is my reality.

I am the offensive coordinator for the New England Patriots, a job of great importance where I help Bill Belichick by preparing him coffee, finding fresh dishrag loincloths to wear around the office, and procuring smokeless tobacco for Coach Belichick while he coaches everything himself. I like this job. I need no other.

This is what happens when you dont ask questions about a Redbox machine that asks you to insert your social security card. It was not worth it, Corky Romano. Also, please don't make your social security number your customized doormat greeting, either.


In retrospect, I would not make this home decorating decision twice.