Research by Equifax, as part of National Identity Fraud Prevention Month, found that 58 per cent of consumers believe their risk of fraud has increased in the last year. Over a third of respondents (36 per cent) said identity fraud was the biggest risk, ahead of online or credit card fraud.
According to the research, respondents are now more aware of the fraud risks that come through an increased use of smartphones and social media. However, almost a third of respondents (31 per cent) admitted they do post information on social media while away on holiday.
Neil Munroe, director from Equifax, warns that such behaviour opens up opportunities for fraudsters. He claims people need to be more vigilant about what personal information is shared online, with whom, and how.
He said: “We advise individuals to keep all their passwords to themselves and not even give them to their partners or other family members. We also recommend that individuals check their credit report on a regular basis to ensure that no unauthorised activity has taken place”.
“The sophistication of online frauds and scams increases by the day, so it is vital consumers understand the value of their own information and take precautions to keep ID fraud at bay.”
A recent freedom of information request revealed that, between 1 May 2012 and 30 April 2013, a total of 35,809 crime reports were made to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud reporting centre.