Identity Fraud Cases Hit Record High

Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Feb 8, 2018

Last year saw identity fraud cases reach record highs, according to the Wall Street Journal. Greenwich Associates, a management consulting firm that has been tracking identity fraud since 2003, said that there were 16.7 million U.S. consumers who had their identities compromised, resulting in $16.8 billion in losses, an eight percent increase from the previous year and the highest rate since the firm first began tracking the phenomena. The firm noted that this record coincides with the Equifax data breach, where hackers accessed the personal information of 145 million Americans (out of a total population of 325 million). Beyond this, the researchers also pointed to the increased rate at which people are linking their credit card and banking information to personal devices like mobile phones, which allow for a "cross-account takeover" by scammers. It was also noted that identity fraud is becoming harder to detect because scammers have taken advantage of the rising number of online payment platforms that don't get reported to credit agencies, like PayPal. 

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