2018 Identity fraud study: $17 billion lost to criminals
19 Apr 2018

Criminals are continuing to enjoy huge success despite efforts to prevent identity fraud, adapting to net 1.3 million more victims, with the amount stolen rising to $16.8 billion, according to the Javelin Strategy & Research’s 2018 Identity Fraud Survey.

Online shopping presents the greatest fraud opportunity and fraudsters are getting more sophisticated, using more complex schemes.

“One and a half million victims of existing account fraud had an intermediary account opened in their name first. This is 200 percent greater than the previous high,” said Javelin.

The study was conducted online among 5,000 US adults over age 18. Data was collected from November 1-16, 2017.

“With the adoption of EMV (embedded chip) cards and terminals, the types of identity fraud continued to shift online and away from physical stores. The complexity of fraud is also on the rise as criminals are opening more new accounts as a means of compromising accounts consumers already have,” Javelin explained.

Other findings include:

  • Account takeover (ATO) grew significantly, tripling over the past year, reaching a four-year high. ATO losses reached $5.1 billion, with ATO victims paying an average of $290 and spending 15 hours on average resolving fraud.
  • Card-not-present fraud is now 81% more prevalent than point of sale fraud.
  • 6.64 % of consumers became victims of identity fraud, with an increase of over one million victims from the previous year, driven by growth in existing non-card fraud and ATO.

“2017 was a runaway year for fraudsters, and with the amount of valid information they have on consumers, their attacks are just getting more complex,” said Al Pascual, senior vice president, Javelin Strategy & Research.

What’s the difference between identity fraud and identity theft? According to Javelin:

“Identity fraud is the unauthorised use of someone’s personal information for illicit financial gain. Identity fraud ranges from using a stolen payment card account for a fraudulent purchase to opening fraudulent new accounts. Identity theft is unauthorised access to personal information. It can occur without identity fraud, such as through data breaches.”

Read more:

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