Monday, 12 October 2009

Identity fraud up: National Identity Fraud Prevention week report

A report prepared by CIFAS for UK National Identity Fraud Prevention Week, which started today, includes statistics and tips etc on ID fraud (aka identity theft) and account takeover fraud.

See the report entitled The Anonymous Attacker -  A special report on Identity Fraud and Account Takeover, and write ups e.g. by ComputerWeekly and the BBC (which led on firms binning rather than shredding customers' sensitive personal data).

Key findings (as summarised in the CIFAS press release) include:

  • "Over 59,000 victims of impersonation have been recorded in the first 9 months of 2009 - an alarming 36% increase from the same period in 2008
  • The overall number of identity frauds has increased by 33% in the first 9 months of 2009 from 2008
  • Account takeovers have risen by 23% in 2009 when compared with the same period in 2008 - and by a staggering 238% in the last 24 months
  • More than 1 in 2 account takeovers have targeted victims' plastic card (i.e. credit card) accounts
  • Mobile phone account takeovers have already more than doubled in 2009, from 2008 levels
  • The South East London (SE) and Birmingham (B) postcode areas are the fraud hotspots for both identity fraud and account takeover - while, more surprisingly, Guildford (GU) and Reading (RG) both appear in the top ten fraud hotspots for both types of fraud."

The ID Fraud Prevention website has guides on ID fraud prevention, but interestingly you have give them your name, company and email address in order to access the guides - even when you're interested in protection for yourself as an individual so that the name of the company you work for should be irrelevant. Unless I'm missing something?

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