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Swedish woman applied to change name to ‘Nazi’

A 28-year-old woman in Sweden has been refused permission to change her first name to 'Nazi' after the authorities deemed the name 'unsuitable', a regional newspaper reports.

Swedish woman applied to change name to 'Nazi'
According to Skånska Dagbladet, the name was rejected because of its association with Germany's National Socialist Party. Photo: Bengt Olof Åradsson/Wikimedia Commons
The woman, from the village of Tyringe, which is known more for its medieval church than far-right activity, made the application earlier this year. 
 
Ingegerd Widell, the development officer at the Swedish Tax Agency in charge of registering new names, said she could not confirm the story without knowing the name of the woman.  
 
“I would be extremely surprised if anyone would get that name,” she said. 
 
The Swedish Tax Agency, which handles Swedes' applications to change their name, only accepts new names if they do not cause problems for the holder or cause discomfort to others. 
 
According to the agency, before approving a name, its officials check if it could “cause offence, be presumed to cause discomfort for the individual or for some other reason are unsuitable”. 
 
According to the Skånska Dagbladet newspaper, which first reported on the case, the application was rejected because “the word Nazi is a short form of National Socialism and is associated with supporters of Nazism”. 
 
 
Last year, the agency turned down a 26-year-old man who wanted to change his first name to 'Prince', on the grounds that it was “not a word associated with a name”, and in 2011 a man's bid to have 'His Majesty' added to his name was turned down because it could lead to “misunderstandings”.
 
Another man did get to add 'King' to his name – an idea he came up with after a long night out – six years ago. But the Stockholmer, King Oliver, told The Local in 2016 that his family “still calls (him) Oliver”.

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FRAUD

ID-card fraud ‘epidemic’ threatens Sweden

Sweden's commitment to transparency and access to information is turning the country into a favourite target for criminals who use fake IDs to defraud unsuspecting Swedes.

ID-card fraud 'epidemic' threatens Sweden

“People have started using our principle of freedom of information as a tool to commit crime,” Lars Minnedal of the Stockholm police fraud unit told the Aftonbladet newspaper.

Since 2002, the number of reported cases of falsified IDs in Sweden has more than doubled, setting a new record in 2012 with 1,496 reported cases. Identity theft is more widespread, with more than 20,000 cases reported in Stockholm alone last year.

Security experts have warned that Sweden may be soon hit with a “fraud epidemic,” as would-be criminals can get all the information they need by making a call to the Swedish Tax Agency (Skatteverket).

“The society we live in makes it possible. The problem is that we have a freedom of information principle, and people never thought of how it could be abused in the way it is today,” Minnedal added. “You can access everything on everyone and there’s no requirement to explain what you want to use the information for.”

While Swedish identity documents are equipped with advanced security features, Minnedal lammented that many store clerks and sales people “systematically neglect” to look carefully at ID cards presented to them or lack knowledge of the card’s proper appearance.

The Local/dl

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