Identity Theft and Cyber Security
IDENTITY THEFT AND FRAUD COMPLAINTS
As businesses increasingly depend on electronic data and computer networks to conduct their daily operations, growing pools of personal and financial information are being transferred and stored online. This can leave individuals exposed to privacy violations and financial institutions and other businesses exposed to potentially enormous liability, if and when a breach in data security occurs.
The Consumer Sentinel database, maintained by the Federal Trade Commission, contains over 9 million consumer fraud and identity theft complaints that have been filed with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and private organizations over the five years 2009 to 2013. In 2013 alone, over 2 million complaints were filed.
The increase in online shopping in recent years has created new avenues for identity thieves. However, a study by Travelers Insurance of its 2011 identity claims found that burglary and theft of physical objects led to the majority of identity theft claims. The study identified the following five top causes of identity fraud:
- Burglary and theft of a wallet, purse, personal identification or computer (73 percent)
- Online or data breach (15 percent)
- Forgery (10 percent)
- Change of address/postal fraud (2 percent)
IDENTITY THEFT AND FRAUD COMPLAINTS, 2011-2013 (1)
HOW VICTIMS' INFORMATION IS MISUSED, 2013 (1)
IDENTITY THEFT BY STATE, 2013
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In 2000 the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National White Collar Crime Center and the Bureau of Justice Assistance joined together to create the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) to monitor Internet-related criminal complaints. In 2012 the IC3 received and processed 289,874 complaints, averaging more than 24,000 complaints per month. The IC3 reports that 114,908 of these complaints involved a dollar loss, and puts total dollar losses at $525 million. The most common complaints received in 2012 included FBI impersonation email scams, various intimidation crimes, and scams that used computer "scareware" to extort money from Internet users.
TOP TEN STATES FOR CYBER CRIME, 2012 (1)