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Three in 10 Brits the victim of identity theft

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26/03/2008

Identity theft is still on the rise, with nearly 30% of Brits falling victim to identity theft within the last three years, according to The Credit Show.
 
Identity theft is continuing to be one of the fastest growing crimes in the UK, with technology and the Internet making it easier for thieves to rip-off their victims. With one in five respondents admitting to someone stealing their computer records to forge their identity, the problem is ever more apparent.
 
Kelly Stanley, spokesperson for The Credit Show, said: “The sharp increase we’ve seen in identity theft is truly alarming. What’s interesting in this survey is the number of cases where computer fraud is now a major contributing factor.”
 
ID cards, one of the biggest computer exercises envisaged, are supposedly the solution. But being computer based, is this just another disaster waiting to happen?
 
Stanley added: “The simple fact is identity theft will always be out there. You really need to be on your guard at all times, and certainly can’t be complacent that it won’t happen to you.”
 
The poll by The Credit Show found that 20% of people either lost £500 to £1,000 or were spending this amount to correct their ID theft. The poll also revealed that 60% of consumers believe ID thefts are likely to increase rather than go down in the near future.
 
With 40% of respondents agreeing that they really don’t know what to do to protect themselves against ID theft, The Credit Show has put together some top tips to help people avoid becoming a victim of ID fraud including never using your mother’s maiden name or place of birth as security passwords.

It also suggests shredding post before throwing it in the bin and never using the same password on more than one account.
 

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