Fraud is big business. The Federal Trade Commission has estimated that 10.8 percent of U.S. adults experienced fraud in 2011, with 37.8 million separate incidents reported. The frauds in this FTC report, which only scratches the surface of all types of fraud, from consumer to corporate, included:
According to a new report, the majority of online fraud in the United States is coming from several cities across the country with high concentrations of data centers. These cities, which include Tampa, New York, Chicago, Atlanta, and LA among others, are seeing increased rates of fraudulent activity, especially across the Internet. The correlation between the number of data centers and the high level of fraud suggests that stolen identities may be being funneled via VPN servers and proxies.
In our tech-based society, smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices are central to our daily lives. One can confidently assume that nearly every American has a mobile device or access to one, leading us to believe that mobile will be the next frontier when it comes to identity authentication.
We'd all like to assume that we are quick enough to recognize a scam before falling into a trap - but many of the best phishing schemes seem credible and legitimate in the beginning. Emails are a favorite resource of cyber criminals, who use emails to trick you into providing login credentials for private accounts. So how can you know to recognize one of these schemes?
Financial institutions have long been the target of phishing schemes and fraudulent activity- from January to June of this year, the financial industry saw 41% of all phishing attacks. Taking a look at other industries, however, has also proven quite shocking. In non-financial industries, fradulent activity and phishing attacks have quadrupled over the last year and a half.
Identity theft and fraud among senior citizens is rising across the country, with many states as well as the U.S. government taking steps to help protect seniors from this risk. Why are seniors more at risk for fraud and identity theft? It may range from their distribution of personal information to generational beliefs making them more trusting of strangers. Regardless of the reason, fraud prevention for seniors is key to keeping the risk low and preventing scams from occurring.
The United Kingdom is reporting a huge jump in liability fraud, citing a 75% increase in bogus liability claims last year alone, numbering 19,800 cases. While the UK reports that insurance fraud rose by 9%, fraudulent claims for "slip and trip" accidents and other injuries appear to be one of the fastest-growing crimes.
As the Internal Revenue Service continues to work to combat tax fraud this year, other federal agencies are also amping up efforts to rein in the issue. One epicenter of fraud is in southern Florida, both due to its proximity to Puerto Rico and the demographic of older residents. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) is working in Miami-Dade and Broward counties in south Florida to minimize fraud risk. The FinCEN has issued a "Geographic Targeting Order" requiring strong identity verification at check cashing companies. Any individual wanting to cash a federal income tax refund will have to show and verifiy their identity.
Despite the Securities and Exchange Commission's focus upon regulating the securities industry and protecting investors, the agency is moving to play a bigger role in cybersecurity. Because the SEC is responsible for customer data protection, disclosure of material information, and market system integrity, it tends to handle cybersecurity issues for advisers, broker dealers, and public companies.
In a wave of preventative measures for data protection, the Blue Cross Blue Shield Assocation announced this week that it will begin offering identity theft protection services for its customers. This year has come with a fair share of challenges for large companies and security breaches; many are hopeful that new identity theft protection options will provide strong safeguards against security threats.