Aussies’ Fear of Online ID Theft Grows

With the high rate of technological advancement, Australians' fear over security breach of private information is growing, a national survey under the Office of the Australian Privacy Commissioner has revealed.

Over two million Australians have suffered theft of their personal data that third parties have used fraudulently, according to a report declared on August 28, 2007. The report indicates Internet as a point of growing pain in securing privacy.

The survey asked a sample group of 1,500 Aussie respondents over the telephone. It found that 9% of them had been victims of identity theft, and 17% had knowledge of someone else being a victim.

The risks of identity theft through the Internet reported to be higher by 27% against 22% of ID theft from documentation, passport or wallet. Approximately 136 people who answered the survey had fallen in the ID theft trap and about 256 knew others who had been victims of this crime.

Australian Privacy Commissioner Karen Curtis said that people are now far more cautious about disclosing information on the Internet since the rapid development in technology. ItWorldCanada published Curtis' statement on August 29, 2007.

One can understand Australians' concerns regarding the effect of technology on users' privacy, especially since the time of the rapid evolution of technology over the recent years, Curtis said.

The survey also found that unlike the situation in the last two years, 50% of those surveyed are now more worried than before about supplying personal information over the Internet. An additional 45% respondents thought that the Internet was more likely to increase the possibility of identity theft.

Some more findings in the report indicated that 65% of Aussies were more reluctant to supply personal details over the Net than in hard copy and 25% of respondents said they entered false information in various online forms to safeguard their privacy.

Newspoll released another survey in August 2007 that involved 1,202 individuals. It found that Australians were worried about the misappropriation of their private information, much more than they regarded national security in terms of terrorism or war.

Related article: ACMA Unleashes SpamMATTERS - the New anti-spam Button

» SPAMfighter News - 12-09-2007

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