The 2010 Identity Fraud Survey Report – released today by Javelin Strategy & Research (http://www.javelinstrategy.com/) – found that the number of identity fraud victims in the United States increased 12 percent to 11.1 million adults in 2009, while the total annual fraud amount increased by 12.5 percent to $54 billion(1). The report found that protection of data by consumers and businesses and enlisting assistance in resolution are helping consumers and businesses resolve fraud more quickly, and are also reducing or eliminating costs for the consumer. Average fraud resolution time dropped 30 percent to 21 hours, and nearly half of new victims file police reports, resulting in double the reported arr
“The 2010 Identity Fraud Survey Report shows that fraud increased for the second straight year and is at the highest rate since Javelin began this report in 2003(2),” James Van Dyke, president and founder, Javelin Strategy & Research. “The good news is consumers are getting more aggressive in monitoring, detecting and preventing fraud with the help of technology and partnerships with financial institutions, government agencies and resolution services. Through IDSafety.net and our free consumer report, Javelin and our co-sponsor partners are working to educate consumers and provide guidelines and tips to help them safeguard their personal information.”
Key Survey Findings:
- Fraud is Up, but Consumer Costs and Resolution Hours Drop – The number of identity fraud victims increased by 12 percent over 2008, reaching the highest level since the survey started in 2003. Javelin believes this may be due to the economic downturn, when historically, higher rates of fraud occur. However, during 2009 there was a drop in fraud costs per victim and a decrease in time to resolution, thanks to increased consumer awareness, assistance provided by financial institutions consumer support organizations, and law enforcement.
- Increase in New Account Fraud – Identity fraud that resulted from fraudsters opening new accounts with stolen information increased in 2009. The number of fraudulent new credit card accounts increased to 39 percent of all identity fraud victims, up from 33 percent in 2008. New online accounts opened fraudulently more than doubled over the previous year, and the number of new e-mail payment accounts increased 12 percent. This year for the first time, the survey asked about new mobile phone account fraud and 29 percent of new accounts fraud victims reported new mobile phone accounts were fraudulently opened.
- Data Breaches Across Various Industries Continue to Compromise Personal Information – Identification most likely to be compromised in a data breach continues to be Full Name (63 percent) and Physical Address (37 percent). With a year-over-year increase of 4 percent, Health Insurance Information is increasingly targeted. The percentage of Social Security numbers compromised decreased to 32 percent from 38 percent in 2008.
- Fraudsters Target Existing Credit Cards – 75 percent of existing card fraud incidents came from credit cards, an increase of 12 percent over 2008. In contrast, existing debit card fraud incidents decreased two percent and represented 33 percent of total existing card fraud in 2009.
- Proactive Consumers are Catching Thieves – Half of all victims filed a police report, resulting in more arrests and convictions. Victims became more vigilant in reporting identity fraud, and reported this resulted in an arrest rate twice last year’s rate, and a prosecution rate that tripled compared to 2008. These findings indicate greater success using information provided by consumers, banks and credit card providers to detect, catch and convict criminals.
- 18 to 24 Year Olds are Slowest to Detect Fraud – Millennials (consumers aged 18 to 24 years old) take nearly twice as many days to detect fraud, compared to other age groups, and thus are fraud victims for longer periods of time. Millennials were found to be the less likely to monitor accounts regularly and the least likely group to take advantage of monitoring programs offered by financial institutions. However, Millennials were the most likely group to take action such as switching primary banks or switching forms of payment.
- Small Business Should Exercise Caution – Small business owners suffered identity fraud at one-and-a-half times the rate of other adults. This appears to be due to the fact that small office / home office business owners use personal accounts when making business transactions and make more transactions than typical adults.
Read the full press release here.
For the consumer report, please visit: www.IDSafety.net. The free consumer reported can be downloaded here. The professional report can be purchased.
To register for an interactive webinar detailing the report’s findings, please visit: https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/115681009