Information breach incidents and credit card frauds have been dominating the headlines for some time. But how often do you pay attention. The majority of us are under the impression that identity theft could never happen to usthinking:”I am always careful with my private documents and I am also diligent about changing my passwords for security sake.” However, is that sufficient to prevent identity theft?
Identity thieves are getting smarter. Imposters continue to find more ways and new to perpetrate the crime. According to the Federal Trade Commission, identity theft is the consumer complains. Still looking to measure the seriousness of identity theft? This article includes the disconcerting and statistics revolving . Have a look.
#1 Consumer Complain for 15 years running
Identity theft has topped the U.S Federal Trade Commission’s complains standing for 15 years running. Identity theft accounts for 13 percent of the complaints, making it the number one concern of the Consumer Sentinel Network. 39 percent of those cases reported lots of data to acquire government documents or benefits and 17 percent of the complaint cases were regarding credit card scams. Imposter scams moved to consumer complaints’ third place.
Credit Card Fraud
Do you know in 2014, roughly 31.8 million Americans had their credit cards breached. Undoubtedly, there has been a considerable progress in technology, such as EMV chips have been made to protect the consumers. But we can’t help but think that the hackers are just as fervently looking for ways to overcome the security measures that are heightened.
According to another report from Barclays, 47% of all the world’s credit card scams occur in the United State of America. Not only has this, the level of debit and credit card scams that happen in the united states, has experienced a huge impact on the other countries as well. United States scored the highest points (35 percent ) among the entire fraud related losses into the UK-issued cards in 2015.
According to a latest report released by the Identity Theft Resource Center the number of U.S. data breaches totaled 781 in 2015. The decades saw an 8.4 percentage hump in the hacking incidents when compared with the 2014 figures. This is the next year because 2005 if the ITRC started tracking breaches. Although the motive behind the data breaches is monetary advantage, but a shift is shown the rationale by the stats. The criminals mean to acquire private and sensitive data so as to induce behavior changes in groups or the individuals whose private information was compromised.
Medical Identity Theft
Federal Trade Commission started Assessing identification theft cases starting from 1992. Since then, there has been a significant growth in the number of cases reported. There were 500,000 victims of health identity theft in 2014. In the majority of the cases the victims incur charges for medical care they did get only since their computerized records have been stolen. Victims experience premiums and half of the instances result from the sufferers’ losing their healthcare coverage.
College Students at Risk
College students are equally at risk of identity theft. According to the Federal Trade Commission every one in five identity theft complaints they received were from young adults in the age category of 20-19. College students become a simple target for its identity thieves since they spend most of their time online and frequently have a credit rating. College students live in an open environment with multiple points of vulnerability including the unsecured college networks and extensive utilization of people Wi-Fi etc.. Apart from that students may use social security number for identification processes, making their information readily accessible.
Identity Theft Prices
Javelin Strategy & Research recently released their 2016 Identity Fraud Study, which reveals the toll identity theft has had financially in the past years. The research found that the $16 billion were stolen from 12.7 million consumers in 2014 and $15 billion were stolen from 13.1 U.S consumers in 2015. In total, $112 billion are dropped to identity theft in the past six years.
Speaking about the costs to victims, as stated by the U.S Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics, two third of identity theft victims undergone direct financial loss of 7,761 on an average. This is the amount offenders after misusing personal information or a victim’s account obtained. Aside from that victims lose a substantial sum recovering from identity theft through legal fees, insurance consulting services etc.. Victims also confront costs that are non-monetary as well including time, psychological distress and harassment from creditors.
What are the odds against you?
Are you wondering: what are the chances of your becoming a victim of identity theft? As stated by the United States Department of Justice, 7% of the families had at least one individual in. Still not convinced? Do you understand in 2005 to 2010, 64.1% of those instances were associated with credit card fraud? Credit card fraud is the fastest growing type of identity theft and we all own credit cards, which make us a victim.
Preventative Steps and Discovery
It’s projected that roughly 85% of U.S. inhabitants actively took steps to stop being a victim to identity theft. Individuals took measures for preventing identity theft which includes altering passwords shredding files that included personal information and retaining tabs.
Among the identity theft cases which were reported during the recent years 45% of the victims discovered about the offense after they were informed by their institution of activities. Additionally, majority of identity theft victims reported that they were not aware of how their personal information was stolen and had they known anything about the offender.
We invite you to remain aware and require all the precautions that are necessary to avoid becoming a victim. Knowledge is power when it comes to combating identity theft.