Identity theft was the number one complaint category in 2010 according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Between January and December 2010, the FTC’s Consumer Sentinel Network (CSN) received more than 1.3 million consumer complaints, which are sorted into 30 complaint categories. Identity theft received 19% of the overall complaints. The complete ranking of all thirty complaint categories is listed on page six of the just released Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book report. Click image below for more information on identity theft protection.
Identity Theft Findings:
- Government documents/benefits fraud (19%) was the most common form of reported identity theft, followed by credit card fraud (15%), phone or utilities fraud (14%), and employment fraud (11%). Other significant categories of identity theft reported by victims were bank fraud (10%) and loan fraud (4%).
- Government documents/benefits fraud increased 4 percentage points since calendar year 2008; identity theft-related credit card fraud, on the other hand, declined 5 percentage points since calendar year 2008.
- Forty-two percent of identity theft complainants reported whether they contacted law enforcement. Of those victims, 72% notified a police department. Sixty-two percent indicated a report was taken.
- Florida is the state with the highest per capita rate of reported identity theft complaints, followed by Arizona and California; Idaho ranked 39th and Washington State ranked 17th.
The Consumer Sentinel Network (CSN) is a secure online database of millions of consumer complaints available only to law enforcement. Begun in 1997 to collect fraud and identity theft complaints, the CSN now has more than 6.1 million complaints, including those about credit reports, debt collection, mortgages, and lending, among other subjects.
Source: Federal Trade Commission, Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book – March 2011