Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Facts About Identity Theft

“Nearly 60 million Americans have been affected by identity theft, according to a 2018 online survey by The Harris Poll. That same survey indicates nearly 15 million consumers experienced identity theft in 2017.”

Other staggering statistics about the growing problem of identity theft are below.

  • “ID theft happened once every 2 seconds in 2017.
  • Victims of identity theft spent over 140 million hours trying to resolve their issues in 2017.
  • The average cost for each lost or stolen record was $225 in 2017 ($221 in 2016).
  • The average size of data breaches increased 1.8% in 2017 to more than 24,000 records.
  • In 2017, there were 16.7 million victims of identity fraud.
  • In 2017, identity thieves stole $16.8 billion from consumers in the U.S.
  • 6.64% of consumers were victims of identity fraud in 2017.
  • In 2016, 13% (399,225) of complaints filed to the FTC were about identity theft, which was the third most common complaint.
  • 36 million records (including doctor’s office, school, etc.) were breached in 2016.
  • Organizations spent an average of $7.01 million on data breaches in 2015 compared to $7.35 million in 2016.
  • You are more likely to have your identity stolen than your car taken or home burglarized.
  • Children are susceptible to identity theft. Since most people under 18 are not actively applying for credit or monitoring it, minors can become easy prey.
  • Up to 18% of victims take 4 years or more to discover they are victims of identity theft.
  • 38-48% of victims discover their identities were stolen within 3 months.
  • Victims spend anywhere from 3 to 5,840 hours repairing the damage caused by having their identities stolen. The average time spent repairing damage from ID theft is 330 hours.
  • 26-32% of victims spend 4 to 6 months dealing with their case.
  • 11-23% of victims spend 7 months to 1 year dealing with their case.
  • Victims lose an average of $1,820 to $14,340 in wages dealing with their cases.
  • An additional $851 to $1,378 is spent by victims toward expenses related to their cases.
  • 66% of victims’ information is used to open a new credit account.
  • 43% of victims think they know the person who stole their identity.
  • Close to 50% of victims have difficulty getting loans or credit because of identity theft.
  • In early 2015, Intuit (TurboTax) had to shut down e-filing because of an influx of fraudulent tax returns.
  • Medical identity theft is on the rise; there were 500,000 victims in 2014 alone.
  • In 2014, $5.8 billion was given to identity thieves from the IRS due to fraudulent returns. Identity thieves use random social security numbers to file tax forms and by chance, it could be yours.”
Always shred sensitive documents that contain any personal data. Some information may not seem like it would be sensitive or worth shredding, but the more small details someone has about you, the easier it is to impersonate you.

For more information on certified document destruction visit www.wasteawaygroup.com.



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