How do identity crimes affect victims?

The Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) published research showing that nearly 40 percent of ITRC victims say their personal information has been stolen, compromised, or misused in the past year.

The report goes beyond the well-known financial implications of identity crime and explores missed opportunities as well as the emotional, physical, and psychological impacts on victims of crimes.

For the report, the ICT Center surveyed victims who had contact with it and victims who had not. According to the responses, the number of victims of repeat identity crimes decreased year by year among the victims. However, half of the general victims surveyed claim to have been victims more than once. Victims are also exposed to more sophisticated attacks that take longer to resolve. The percentage of “unresolved issues from the previous year” has increased from 37 percent to 55 percent since 2020.

Other main meals

  • In general, identity crime victims lose less money. Most victims of the center and victims in general report that they lost less than $500. However, one group of center victims grew from 9% in 2020 to 30% in 2021 – those victims who lost $10,000 or more.
  • The number of center victims who reported experiencing negative emotions in 2021 increased to 87 percent from 79 percent the previous year, while the number of center victims who reported physical effects jumped from 44 percent to 68 percent in one year. Two-thirds of general victims reported emotional and physical effects of being a victim of identity crimes.
  • The number of ITRC victims who changed behavior due to identity crime decreased slightly overall and in five of seven potential actions. More victims reported having their credit frozen and using their Identity Protection PIN from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) when filing taxes.

“Some of the comments in the report are heartbreaking,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center.

“One victim told us their lives were ruined after they found out that someone had stolen over $200,000 in their name. Another victim expressed her frustration that no one cared.”

ITRC has seen one type of attack grow over 1,000 percent in the past 12 months – social media account takeovers. The report includes the results of a quick survey of victims who reported the takeover of a social media account. According to the victims who responded to the partial survey:

  • 85 percent had their Instagram accounts hacked; 25 percent had their Facebook account hacked.
  • 48 percent have clicked on a link they think is from a friend; 22 percent responded to a cryptocurrency scam.
  • 51 percent of victims lost personal money or sales revenue when their accounts were hacked.
  • 70 percent have been permanently banned from their social media accounts; 71% connected with friends listed on a social media account; 67 percent reported that the criminal continued to post as the account holder after closing.
  • 66 percent of victims reported having a strong emotional reaction to losing control of their social media accounts, including feeling violated (92 percent), feeling anxious or anxious (83 percent), anger (78 percent), and vulnerability (77 percent). cent) and suicide (7 percent).

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