From the Better Business Bureau of Central Virginia:
Communication, work, school, shopping and even doctor’s visits have undergone massive digital transformations in the past year. Identity thieves are evolving right alongside us to better exploit victims in an increasingly digital world. The result is a sharp rise in both the number of fraud incidents and the amount of money lost ($712 billion in 2020 according to the Aite Group).
Check out these 8 facts illustrating the scale of the identity theft crisis. Then, assess your risk and craft a plan to protect your identity.
1. Fraud and identity theft rose by 45% from 2019 to 2020.
Life changed dramatically last year. Confusion over the COVID-19 pandemic collided with rapid transitions to remote work and learning. At the same time, many consumers lost jobs and loved ones. Together, these factors contributed to a sharp rise in scams, fraud and identity theft–nearly doubling the number of identity theft reports consumers submitted to the FTC in 2019.
2. 29% of all reports submitted to the FTC were about identity theft.
Consumers nationwide submitted 1.4 million reports of identity theft to the FTC’s Consumer Sentinel Network. Identity theft was the most commonly reported incident, topping common scam types like impostor and online purchase scams.
3. Reports of thieves taking over accounts have increased 72% since 2019.
As more services shift online, consumers’ private information shifts as well. One…