Seventy Percent of Identity Theft Victims Helped by ITAC Report They Do Not Know the Source of the Crime

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ITAC, the Identity Theft Assistance Center, surveyed identity theft victims about their knowledge of the source of the crime as part of Cyber Security Awareness Month. The findings confirm the majority of victims don't know how their information compromised - a reminder to be watchful for signs of suspicious activity.

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One important way to protect yourself is to monitor your accounts online for suspicious activity and take advantage of fraud alerts your financial services company might offer.

Nearly 70% of the 2,695 victims who used ITAC Victim Assistance® in 2011 do not know the source of the crime, according to a survey by ITAC, the Identity Theft Assistance Center. Of the victims who did know the source of the crime, more than a quarter said it was computer related (hacker/virus/phishing).

“We periodically survey the people we help to make the point that identity theft can come from many sources, so it requires constant vigilance,” said ITAC President Anne Wallace. “One important way to protect yourself is to monitor your accounts online for suspicious activity and take advantage of fraud alerts your financial services company might offer.”

Consumers who use ITAC Victim Assistance® are verified victims of identity theft and are referred to the free service by their financial services company. The 763 victims who knew the source of the crime report the following sources:

Computer hacker/ virus/ phishing                26.95%    
Other                                25.23%    
Lost or stolen wallet, checkbook or credit card        16.64%    
Data Breach                            10.04%    
Friends, relatives, in-home employees            7.66%    
Mail (stolen or fraudulent address change)            4.89%    
Corrupt business or employee                4.62%    
House Burglarized                        3.96%

About ITAC

ITAC, the Identity Theft Assistance Center (http://www.identitytheftassistance.org), is the national advocate for identity theft victims and a leading voice on identity policy. Millions of consumers have access to the ITAC victim assistance service through our members – the financial services companies who support ITAC and offer it as a free service for their customers. ITAC is dedicated to protecting all consumers through education, research and the criminal prosecution of identity crime. Through our partnership with Intersections Inc., ITAC’s world-class victim assistance and identity management service is available to everyone through ITAC Sentinel® (http://www.itacsentinel.com).

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Kate Ennis
kate@enniscommunications.com
301-580-6726
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