CIFAS recently announced that there have been 96,000 confirmed cases of fraud in the UK between January and May 2013, with 60,000 of them relating to identity fraud. This vast number of incidents should be a warning to people to be even more vigilant against becoming victims of crime.
The UK’s fraud prevention service released the details in a report, and amongst the incidents of identity fraud it confirmed that over 46,000 related to victims of impersonation, which is where the personal details of the victim are used to open new accounts.
Another 13,500 cases related to takeover fraud, which is where the users’ accounts are hacked and taken over by criminals.
CIFAS stated that the sheer scale of the fraud means we need to be more vigilant to avoid becoming victims and that a new attitude to fraud is needed. Although some people wrongly claim that fraud does not have any real victims, the truth is that many individuals are badly affected by identity theft, and organisations are also at risk from fraud.
CIFAS recommended a few simple strategies for reducing the risk of becoming a victim of fraud. These included being careful about what you publish on social networks and avoiding public Wi-Fi when accessing sensitive information such as online banking websites. It also said that organisations have to ensure that they can protect their customers’ data properly.
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- Five steps to avoid being the victim of ID theft (telegraph.co.uk)
- Identity Theft – Protect Yourself (assuredsecurityshredding.co.uk)
- Internet Passwords: Tips for Staying Safe Online (assuredsecurityshredding.co.uk)