Contributed by Kent Lewis, the President of Anvil Media, Inc.
Identity theft affects as many as 10 million Americans each year, costing victims an additional 300 million hours in identity recovery and repair. According to the FTC “Consumer Fraud and Identity Theft Complaint Data” report in February 2008, the losses to businesses and financial institutions total nearly 53 billion dollars annually.
This is caused by a combination of factors that include: a lack of consumer knowledge about protecting your identity online; growing comfort and trust in social platforms; the need for social platforms to generate revenue; and a lack of standards. These factors have all led to a tremendous potential for online theft and fraud.
Fueling the Fire
With limited government oversight, industry standards or incentives to educate users on security, privacy and protecting your identity, users are exposed to identity theft and fraud.