With identity fraud at the second highest level in eleven years, Intersections Inc. reminds consumers to remain vigilant and shares advice on how they can better safeguard their personal information from criminals.
CHANTILLY, VA, February 5, 2014 – The 2014 Identity Fraud report, just released by Javelin Strategy & Research and sponsored by Intersections Inc. (NASDAQ: INTX), found that more than 13 million U.S. adults fell victim to identity fraud in 2013; an increase of 500,000 from 2012. This increase in number of victims is the greatest in three years since the study began eleven years ago. Intersections Inc. is a company dedicated to identity risk management, a leading provider of data breach solutions, and the company behind one of the top-rated identity theft protection services, Identity Guard®.
The report also found data breaches to be one of the greatest risk factors, as nearly one in three consumers who received data breach notification letters became a victim of identity fraud.
“Fact-based studies like this demonstrate the importance of consumers, financial institutions, and service providers coming together as partners in the fight against identity fraud, “said Steve Schwartz, Executive Vice President, Intersections Inc. “The continued increase in victims and data breaches is a cause for concern for both consumers and businesses. We must partner together; continuously enhancing our existing capabilities and providing the tools and resources to help consumers protect their information.”
Intersections Inc. recommends the following tips to help guide consumers in the protection of their personal information.
- Think Twice Before Sharing Sensitive Information. Exposing common information like birthdates and addresses puts consumers at greater risk, as this type of information is commonly used by financial institutions for identity verification in order to access accounts. This type of seemingly harmless information could be valuable to experienced identity thieves. Before providing this information, ask why it’s needed and how it will be protected.
- Be Social, But Be Smart. Knowing that social networks are a hotbed for identity fraud activity, consumers should take extra caution when deciding whom to connect with and what applications to download. Users who approve friend requests from strangers and use GPS/location based applications are generally more susceptible to fraud.
- Take Caution When Using Mobile Devices. The convenience of online and mobile banking is here to stay, but consumers need to take the extra step of ensuring their network connection is secure and their devices have updated security. Never access your banking information through public Wi-Fi. Instead, use your carrier’s cellular service.
- Be an Active Party in Detection. Identity fraud is more than just the misuse of credit card information. Take advantage of a comprehensive identity protection service like Identity Guard® Total Protection®, which not only monitors credit reports, but also scans public records and online activity for signs of fraudulent use of personal information. This gives consumers the extra security they need to help keep them protected.
- Act Quickly. The sooner victims learn of the fraud, the sooner their road to recovery can begin, improving the likelihood their losses will be reduced. Consumers must remain alert and act quickly in the event they notice suspicious activity, by reporting it to their financial institutions and law enforcement.
For more helpful tips, visit http://www.identityguard.com/identity-theft-resources/.
About Intersections Inc:
Intersections Inc. (Nasdaq: INTX) is a leading provider of identity risk management, privacy protection and other subscription based services for consumers. Our core services monitor personal information for our consumers, aggregate it into digestible, consumer-friendly reports and alerts, and provide personalized education and support to help our customers understand their information and take the actions they deem appropriate. Since its business was founded in 1996, Intersections has protected the identities of more than 36 million consumers. To learn more, visit http://www.intersections.com/.