Identity theft is the most common type of cybercrime which is escalating beyond boundaries. The effect of the same is being seen in various parts of the world now. To back this fact, here is some research which puts some light on the increasing numbers of identity thefts that have occurred from 2012 to 2017 conducted by Javelin Strategy & Research. This research also states that billions of dollars have been stolen from various accounts just under the title of identity theft.
Today, the world is widely connecting via the internet – the advancement in technology is actually putting our security at stake due to data breaches. Hackers by fraudulent mediums are using the credentials of the people to steal money, purchase items, or maybe buy a vehicle on loan with the help of a phony identity. In the year 2014, close to 63,000 incidents were reported out of which 1,300 were confirmed as data breach incidents that took place in 95 different countries. This is a worrisome situation because, within a year, the breach number increased from 621 to 1,300, stated by, Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR).
“Identity thefts and associated frauds are crimes which people are not really aware about. The extent of financial and reputational damage that an identity hacker/thief could do is beyond what people can even think of. Unfortunately, even with the latest innovative and disruptive technologies, this is one are which is lacking a proper solution. Cryptography and Blockchain technologies look promising and will solve this problem truly. How we tackle the knowledge and awareness problem is another question that needs tackling.” says Shiv Aggarwal, CEO of MyEarth.Id.
“You will be shocked to know that there have been some cases in which the victims are unaware of the identity fraud unless, an enormous amount of bill is put in front of them regarding an item they did not even purchase or maybe after applying for a loan, they find out a problem with their credit score. “
Sometimes it is the users who open the gate for scammers – putting their debit card information online on various social media platforms. “Sharing a picture online of your credit/debit card is a surefire way to have your details hacked. You’re practically handing your personal information over to a fraudster,” says John Cannon, fraud and ID director at credit report provider Noddle. By doing the same, you are actually providing him an access to your bank account directly as your debit/credit card number details along with the expiry date of the same are being displayed on a public platform. Who is to be blamed -unfortunately, the real victim is too ignorant!
In Russia, hackers were found guilty of committing identity fraud reported that within 12 hours they were able to withdraw a sum of more than $9.4 million from close to 2100 ATMs from 280 different cities of the world. If this could happen within a time span of 12 hours, imagine what all can happen when people are unaware of the fact that they have been attacked by identity theft crime until they see a solid proof in front of their eyes, which eventually, eats up a lot of time of the destitute victims
Identity theft is an issue that cannot be taken lightly. People inadvertently suffer today just because all their information is now easily available on various online portals. As individuals, we need to ask this question to ourselves – is the internet a curse or a blessing for a better future?
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