Technology does much to improve our lives. It allows us to easily communicate with one another, do important tasks in a fraction of the time it took only a few years ago, and immediately access practically anything we need. However, as much as it makes our lives easier, technology also has its downsides. One unfortunate byproduct of our reliance on technology is a sharp increase in identity theft. In this article, we examine six worrying identity theft facts.
Fact #1: Credit Card Fraud is the Most Common Type of Identity Theft
Credit card fraud is committed far more often than other types of identity theft. In fact, around 18,000 people contacted the Federal Trade Commission in 2020 and 2021 to report instances of credit card fraud.
Fact #2: 33% of Americans are Identity Theft Victims
Statistics indicate that around 33% of Americans have been victimized by identity thieves. This is double the world average.
Fact #3: People Who Actively Use Social Media are at High Risk of Identity Theft
Active social media users are approximately 30% more likely to have their identities stolen than people who aren’t active on social media. In fact, social media has become one of the primary places where scammers find their victims. Identity theft statistics indicate that Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat users are at an even higher risk of identity theft than active users of other social media networks.
Fact #4: 15 Million Americans Experience Identity Theft Each Year
Around 15 million people in the United States become identity theft victims every year. This results in a staggering $50 billion in financial losses. To put this in perspective, this equals approximately 4.5% of all U.S. residents.
Fact #5: Children are Common Identity Theft Victims
Shockingly, over 1,000,000 young children become identity theft victims every year. Around 50% of these victims are six years old or younger.
Fact #6: Identity Theft is Committed Every 14 Seconds
Not only is identity theft in the United States widespread—it is also frequent. In fact, studies have shown that someone becomes a victim of identity theft every 14 seconds in the United States.
Protect Yourself from Identity Theft
Although identity theft is a growing problem, it is possible to reduce your odds of becoming an identity theft victim by taking the right steps. Steps you can take to protect yourself include:
- Regularly check your credit report.
- Enable two-step online verification whenever possible.
- Vary your passwords and change them frequently.
- Make your social media accounts private.
Contact a Consumer Class Action Attorney Today!
If you have had your identity stolen, you need an experienced consumer class action attorney on your side. Identity theft is frequently the result of negligence on the part of institutions that store people’s personal information. If an institution has provided unauthorized access to your information, our attorneys will strive to ensure that you obtain compensation for your losses. Please contact us today to schedule a free consultation.