The Cost Of Identity Fraud Increases Annually

We all know someone who’s been a victim of identity fraud or possibly you are the person you know who’s had their identity stolen.  Unfortunately, no matter how much technology gets thrown at this problem, identity theft is still on the rise annually.  Giact.com provided us this detailed infographic which outlines the staggering costs of identity theft.

What stands out to me, aside from the $16.8 billion dollars in damages caused by identity theft in 2017, is the rise in synthetic identity theft.  The fact that fraudsters can create a new identity out of thin air is staggering and scary.  This means your personal identifying information (PII) might be used fraudulently with your real name and identity or a brand new identity using some of your information such as a social security number or credit card number.

growing costs of identity fraud infographic

Synthetic identity theft cost the credit card industry 6 billion dollars in 2016 and will likely increase for 2018.

So with all of this in mind, what can you do to keep your identity safe?  Monitoring your credit and your credit reports is a good start.  It’s the first place you’ll notice any abnormal activity such as credit inquiries you didn’t approve or accounts you didn’t personally open.

Keep your information secure. Make sure you only share your PII with trusted sources, especially online.  Make sure the websites you visit and submit information on have a green padlock in the browser bar.  This means the website is secure, making it more difficult for thieves to steal your information.

You can read about more ways to help protect your identity from theft & fraud here.