2019 identity theft report released

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The University of Texas at Austin Center for Identity has released the 2019 International Identity Theft Assessment and Prediction Report, which details the emerging trends in international identity theft, fraud and abuse and provides additional insights into the supply chain of abused identity assets

Firstly, the report – which includes key statistics from over 900 international cases of identity theft and other identity-related crimes – concludes that, despite the global reach of the internet and the interconnected nature of many multi-national financial services, the impact of most of the international cases in the ITAP report is overwhelmingly local, with 95 per cent of the cases ‘local to a particular country, as opposed to international incidents that have multi-national or worldwide effects’.

The report also found that 37 per cent of the cases involved an ‘insider threat’, or individuals from within the compromised organisations. Seventy-five per cent of the cases occurred as a result of cyber vulnerabilities, which the report reasoned indicates the use of computers and the internet in executing the crimes.

The study also found that passwords, financial information, dates of birth, social security, and photographs of the victim took the biggest toll on victims in terms of financial loss.

“The personal data business is global, so it is imperative that we gain a better understanding of the international exchange of personal identifiable information. This Identity Theft Assessment and Prediction is an unprecedented and insightful beginning,” said Dr Suzanna Barber, Director of the University of Texas at Austin Center for Identity.

Generali Global Assistance, one of the sponsors of the report, noted that it is important to study these trends as it seems that massive breaches are announced on a daily basis, ‘with Capital One being the most recent offender’.

“The protection of valuable identity assets mandates an international investigation and understanding of the exchange, use and misuse of these assets. The UT Center for Identity will lead the way with this groundbreaking research project," concluded Dr Barber.

Read the full report here.