2009 Identity Theft Report

October 01 , 2009 in Industry News

Records found in dumpster

The Javelin 2009 Identity Fraud Survey Report: Consumer Version provides guidelines for consumers to help prevent, detect and resolve identity fraud. Over the past five years, Javelin has surveyed nearly 25,000 adults to find out the actual ways consumers are being affected by identity fraud in the United States.

The results of the study are used to help educate
consumers to lower their risk of identity fraud. This year’s phone survey of almost 4,800 adults is the largest, most up-to-date
study of identity fraud in the U.S.

For the very first time since Javelin began this study five years ago, identity fraud rose this past year. Almost 10 million Americans learned they were victims of identity fraud in 2008, up from 8.1 million victims in 2007. More consumers are becoming victimized by this serious crime, reversing a previous trend in which identity fraud had been gradually decreasing. This makes sense because overall criminal activity tends to increase when there is a recession.

The good news is that the average consumer cost has dropped to almost $500, which is much lower than in years past. Consumer cost is the out-of-pocket cost suffered by victims in order to resolve the fraud. Because of zero-liability fraud protection offered by many banks and credit card companies, most victims will pay nothing out-of-pocket.

Over the past five years, Javelin has collected data on nearly 25,000 adults to measure the overall impact of identity fraud on consumers. In 2008, almost 4,800 adults were asked about their day-to-day financial behaviors to help determine the potential
causes of such fraud.

In this report, Javelin provides basic, easy-to-follow guidelines that consumers can use to protect themselves against this serious crime. The 2009 Identity Fraud Survey Report: Consumer Version equips consumers with proven methods that show how to prevent, detect and resolve identity fraud. Our recommendations to consumers are solidly based upon the results of thorough research and are backed by accurate and careful analysis of the most up-to-date data on identity fraud

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