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Downward Trend Being Observed in Identity Frauds

Identity fraud has dipped 12% as per the '2007 Identity Fraud Survey Report' of Javelin Strategy and Research.

The factors that had led to the decline, according to the study are increase of consumer awareness and education, increasing use of online banking and financial sites allowing people to better watch and review their accounts, and joint activities of industry and consumers to protect sensitive information.

The study also reveals that in 2006 the number of victims of identity theft in the U.S. was 500,000 less than that in 2005. In 2006, 3.7% of total adult population in America was victimized compared to 4.0% in 2005 and 4.7% in 2003. This shows the continuous decline in identity fraud victims, year on year.

Of the respondents in the survey, 1.5% said that they were victims of new fraud in 2006 that dropped to 1% in 2007. Many victims were able to detect the fraud relatively quickly by using online channels to view their account statements. As a result average fraud dropped from $10,000 in 2006 to an average of $7,260 in 2007.

Considering the total dollars, identity fraud in 2006 dropped 12% over 2005, from an amount of $55.7 billion to $49.3 billion over the two years. Every year Americans and U.S. businesses lose $49.3 billion while an individual loses an average of $5,720. Teenagers face the maximum risk calling for more education on ID fraud at the college and university levels and for people falling in the age group 18-24 years.

In another recent survey by Javelin Strategy and Research, 9% of victims of identity fraud knew that the thieves stole their information from paper mail while 12% attributed the theft to attacks by computer viruses, phishing, hacking and spyware that entice consumers into giving out their financial information.

The average monetary loss due to paper mail fraud estimated to $4,200 while losses owing to phishing attacks were $6,200 and that due to viruses, spyware and hackers amounted to $7,500. Installing anti-virus solutions to computers could significantly minimize the risk of ID threat, says Javelin president James Van Dyke. Baltimoresun.com reported this on May 7, 2007.

» SPAMfighter News - 5/30/2007

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