Javelin: Identity fraud reports increased by more than a million last year

Javelin: Identity fraud reports increased by more than a million last year

Summary: A new report from Javelin Strategy & Research found that identity fraud claimed approximately one new victim every three seconds in 2012.

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Identity fraud grew sharply in 2012 with more than 12 million reported claims, according to a new report from Javelin Strategy & Research.

Analysts found that the number of identity fraud incidents increased by approximately a million people in 2012. If you want to read that in even more frightening terms, researchers equated that with one new victim in the United States every three seconds.

In financial terms, the dollar amount stolen increased to $21 billion. Javelin noted that this is a three-year high but more than half of the all-time high of $47 billion in 2004.

zdnet-Javelin-identity-fraud-2012

The most common method used for stealing identities appeared to be data breach notification letters. Approximately one in four recipients of these kinds of messages ended up being a victim.

Anything involving social security numbers also seemed to up the ante as consumers who had their SSNs compromised were five times more likely to be the victim of identity fraud than the average consumer.

The bright side (if there is one) is that researchers said businesses now respond faster to fraud claims, meaning that a consumer’s information is at risk for a shorter period of time, reducing the mean cost per victim.

Javelin Strategy & Research CEO Jim Van Dyke explained in the report that this is because "consumers and institutions are now starting to act as partners," but "consumers must take data breach notifications more seriously."

Chart via Javelin Strategy & Research

Topics: Security, E-Commerce, IT Priorities, Privacy

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4 comments
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  • Press release journalism

    Is Javelin doing pure research (are they a think tank), or are they trying to market a product?

    Inquiring minds want to know.
    John L. Ries
  • The Linux users say that Linux servers grew last year

    so if you connect the dots you can see why identity fraud is on the rise.
    I Am Galactus
    • Paging the Fantasic Four

      Galacticus appears to have infiltrated ZDNet. Please take appropriate action.

      I'd ask the Green Lantern Corps, but it's not really their job to fight Marvel villains.
      John L. Ries
  • A little clarity

    The article says "The most common method used for stealing identities appeared to be data breach notification letters. Approximately one in four recipients of these kinds of messages ended up being a victim." This implies that the identities are being stolen from information in the breach letters, possibly mail fraud? Or is this some correlation/causation confusion?
    Bill Wingert