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Identity Theft is Rising
Identity theft will become an even bigger threat to consumers in the coming year as cash grabbing scammers change tactics and target different demographics. This is the conclusion of the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) 2023 forecast. "In 2023, consumers will double the number of direct payments and transfer applications," said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of ITRC. "The speed of social media takes over 1000% in one year due to phishing attacks and identity-based consumer fraud."
Research by this consumer organization shows that 27% of individuals and 87% of businesses have lost revenue because of social media accounts. There has been an increase in online fraud related crimes where cyber criminals have targeted someone who opened a credit account using just enough personal information to bypass Internet security features.
Criminals Will Change Tactics
"These patterns point to an ongoing shift in tactics," Velasquez said. "We expect to see online crimes affecting different generations, based on how people interact with the digital world, and an increase in cash grabbing scams targeting ethnic groups."
One planned change is how love tricks work. In the past, scammers pretended to meet their loved one online to convince them to give them money. But the ITRC says the scam is changing, and criminals are turning to platonic relationships to gain the trust of their victims.
"We believe that these money making online criminals may be looking to exploit the technology gap between people who accept the new password-less login and those who don't," Velasquez said. "We will be reviewing the amount of information included in data breach notifications in 2023. Lack of information about contracts makes people and companies more vulnerable to security breaches."
Guide to Other Emerging Procedures
Other cash stealing online theft trends emerging in 2023 may include: Fraud targeting ethnic groups or immigrants with limited English proficiency will increase. Internet crime and fraud will continue to affect generations.
Payment and contact methods vary depending on age and how each person interacts with the digital world. The growing number of payment instruments among thieves will prompt Congress or the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to act to stop the use of these deceptive cash taking instruments.
Data Breach Notices Will Escalate
The number of data breach notifications that expose small amounts of information about contracts will continue to rise, putting more people and businesses at risk. Cashfever does not believe that legislators will act to provide consumers with the protections they need.
There is still a lot of evidence that data breaches give scammers the info they need to craft more effective phishing campaigns and fake accounts. Because of this, Cashfever predicts that Congress will not pass a comprehensive privacy and data protection law in 2023.
Do NOT share personal info with strangers, or strange websites. There will be litle, if any, protection for Identity Theft victims in 2023. Cashfever wants you to always stay safe on, or off, the Internet!
Taking steps to protect your personal information can help minimize the risks of identity theft. But what if a thief gets your information anyway? Here are some of the ways thieves might use your stolen information and signals which mean you may need to take action.
An opportunistic thief could use your information to get credit or service in your name.
How to spot it: Get your free credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com. Review it for accounts you did not open, or for inquiries you do not recognize. A new credit card, a personal loan, or a car loan will appear as a new account. A new cell phone plan or utility service — like water, gas, or electric — will show up as an inquiry.
An opportunistic thief could use your credit card or take hard earned cash out of your bank account.
How to spot it: Check your credit card or bank statement when you get it. Look for purchases or cash withdrawals you did not make. Added advice: Sign up to get text or email alerts from your credit card and/or bank whenever there is a new transaction. This could help you spot unauthorized, or fraudulent, activity on your account.
An identity thief could steal your tax refund or use your Social Security number to get a job, or work.
How to recognize it: A notice from the IRS that there is more than one tax return filed in your name is likely a sign of tax identity theft. Also a red flag will be a notice that you have income from an employer you do not know.
Cashfever warns an opportunistic money making thief might also use your health insurance to get medical care.
How to spot it: Review your medical bills and Explanation of Benefits statements for services you did not get. This may be a sign of medical identity theft.
An identity thief could use your information to file a claim for unemployment benefits.
How to spot it: A notice from your state unemployment office or employer about unemployment benefits that you did not apply for could be a sign of fraud. If you discover any signs that someone unknown is using your personal information, find out what to do at IdentityTheft.gov.
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