The Identity Theft Resource Center® and AuraTM Identity Guard® surveyed employers and employees on identity compromise solutions as an employment benefit

SAN DIEGO, August 17, 2020 – Today, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC), a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity crime, and AuraTM Identity Guard®, one of the first to establish the identity theft protection industry in a colossal effort to help consumers protect their identities, released their findings from research on how employers and employees feel about having access to identity compromise support as a benefit option.

The results from the trend analysis, Identity Compromise and the Value of an Employee Benefits Solution, show that employees find significant value in having access to an identity compromise solution; having an available remediation solution creates a better mindset for those that use it; and that there are halo results that benefit others (especially employers). In 2019, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) received over 3.2 million reports of fraud with more reports of identity theft than any other category. There is an opportunity to provide the needed support employees are asking for by giving them access to an identity compromise solution as a component of the benefits suite.

Access The Impacts of Identity Theft on Employees and Their Workplace Report

“Cybersecurity is an organizational issue,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “Cybersecurity is not only in the hands of an IT or security department. Every employee plays a crucial role in its company’s security network. That is why it is so critical employees are educated on cybersecurity and have the proper cyber-hygiene tools.”

In some cases, the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of offering an identity compromise solution as an employee benefit. COVID-19 forced many employers to rethink how to conduct business when federal and state governments, under the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), issued stay-at-home orders for all nonessential businesses. Many employers were put in an unfamiliar situation of ensuring that their employee’s home environment could sustain their work requirements. Employees had to ensure that their home computing networks, including home routers and modems, had the appropriate security settings in place. Tessian’s The State of Loss Data Report found nearly half of the people surveyed said they are forced to find workarounds for security policies while working from home to do the work required.

“At Aura, we don’t consider our products and features a benefit, rather a necessity,” said Hamed Saeed, General Manager of Aura Identity Guard. “The results of this study clearly indicate the value employees place on having their personal information protected – especially during this pandemic. Additionally, the results illustrate something we’ve known to be true: by protecting employees, employers are also able to protect themselves from digital malice by instilling a culture of cybersecurity across the enterprise.”

The findings support that many employees want an identity compromise solution in some manner – from a referral to a free non-profit service, all the way to an employer-paid solution. Over 82 percent of employers surveyed said that offering access to an identity compromise solution did, indeed, provide value to their staff. In early 2020 AftermathTM survey results, 24.6 percent of victims have had issues with their employer as a result of their personal identity compromise and 27.3 percent have had challenges with their boss or coworkers.

The report is available for download now.

Consumers and victims can receive free support and guidance from a knowledgeable live-advisor by calling 888.400.5530 or visiting www.idtheftcenter.org to live-chat.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud and privacy issues. Through public and private support, the ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its contact center, website, social media channels, live-chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org.

FOLLOW THE ITRC

Instagram: @idtheftcenter

Facebook: IDTheftCenter

Twitter: @IDTheftCenter                                                                                                                       

About Aura

Aura™ is a technology company dedicated to simplifying digital security for consumers. Committed to creating a unified platform of services, Aura uses adaptive technology to enable customers to manage disparate cybersecurity needs with ease. Innovative personal identity protection and security products such as Identity Guard and Hotspot Shield, privacy products FigLeaf and PrivacyMate and technology services including Intrusta antivirus are part of the Aura family. Trusted by millions of customers, Aura is the digital halo that provides real-time peace of mind. For more information about Aura, visit www.aura.com.

FOLLOW AURA

Instagram: @AuraAllStars
Facebook: Aura Company  
Twitter: @YourDigitalHalo

MEDIA CONTACT

Identity Theft Resource Center                 
Charity Lacey 
VP of Communications    
O: 858-634-6390                                     
C: 619-368- 4373
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

Aura Identity Guard
Lark-Marie Antón
(781) 552-3259
lark@auracompany.com


The number of individuals impacted by data breaches dropped 66 percent compared to 2019

SAN DIEGO, July 14, 2020 – Today, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC), a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity crime, released its U.S. data breach findings for the first half of 2020.

According to the data breach analysis, publicly-reported U.S. data breaches have dropped 33 percent in the first half of 2020 compared to the first half of 2019. Impacted individuals have also dropped – 66 percent. Attacks by external threat actors are still the most common cause of a data breach (404 so far in 2020), but compromises caused by internal threat actors are at a three-year low (83 so far in 2020) as more people work from home and have less access to internal systems and data. Data breaches involving third-party contractors and vendors are also down (53 so far in 2020).

Six-month data breach trends between January – June 2020 provided by ITRC

Access the Identity Theft Resource Center’s 2020 Six-Month Data Breach Analysis and Key Takeaways here

“The decrease in the number of data breaches and individuals impacted is good news for consumers and businesses overall,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “However, the emotional and financial impacts on individuals and organizations are still significant. The impact on individuals may be even more harmful as criminals use stolen personal information to misappropriate government benefits intended to ease the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The ITRC will continue to help victims by guiding them on the best ways to navigate the dangers of exposed personal information from a data breach and the risks of identity crime as a result.”

Year-over-year data breach trends 2020 provided by ITRC
Year-over-year data breach trends 2020 provided by ITRC

Unless there is a significant uptick in reported data breaches, the ITRC projects 2020 is on pace to see the lowest number of breaches and exposures since 2015. However, the ITRC believes the lower number of breaches is only temporary because cybercriminals are using data stolen in data breaches dating back to 2015 to execute scams, credential stuffing attacks, phishing attacks and fraud that requires identity data.

“With so much data being consumed and so much focus on improved cyber-hygiene at work and home, the available pool of useful data is being reduced,” Velasquez said. “Cybercriminals will have to act to update their data at some point, which will lead to a return to more normal threat patterns. While it is too early to tell when that may occur, it likely won’t happen overnight, but breaches will gradually increase over time.”

For anyone that has been a victim of a data breach, the ITRC recommends downloading its free ID Theft Help app to manage the various aspects of an individual’s data breach case.

Consumers and victims can receive free support and guidance from a knowledgeable live-advisor by calling 888.400.5530 or visiting www.idtheftcenter.org to live-chat.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud and privacy issues. Through public and private support, the ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its contact center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

MEDIA CONTACT:
Identity Theft Resource Center                 
Charity Lacey 
VP of Communications    
O: 858-634-6390                                     
C: 619-368- 4373
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

Ralph Linares, John Breyault and Brooke Fortson added to the Board of Directors

SAN DIEGO, June 23, 2020 – The Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity crime, are pleased to announce Ralph Linares, Goldfish Consulting; John Breyault, National Consumers League; and Brooke Fortson, SAS, were elected to its Board of Directors.

“I am pleased to welcome these three industry leaders to our board as each of their individual skill sets and experience will collectively help the ITRC better serve victims of identity and cyber crime,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the ITRC. “Their valuable expertise is unmatched and will ultimately strengthen our capabilities and understanding as we continue to strive towards meeting our mission of assisting victims of identity and cyber crimes and helping them resolve their cases.”

Ralph Linares, John Breyault and Brooke Fortson added to the Board of Directors

Linares is CIO and Founder of Goldfish Consulting. He has over twenty years of experience in information technology and cybersecurity. With leadership, technical and operational expertise, Linares enjoys educating businesses on leveraging technologies and applying best practices. He focuses his services in cloud, hybrid and local infrastructure, and business operations for startups and high growth companies.

Breyault is a nationally-recognized consumer advocate with more than 15 years of experience championing the rights of consumers and the underserved. At the National Consumers League, Breyault advocates for stronger consumer protections before Congress and federal agencies on issues related to telecommunications, fraud, data security, privacy, aviation, live event ticketing, video gaming and other consumer concerns.

Fortson is Sr. Manager of Global Product Marketing and leads the global product marketing team responsible for the SAS Fraud and Security Intelligence portfolio of solutions. She is also a Brand Champion for SAS and an advocate for Women in Analytics for Fraud and Financial Crime. Fortson also lends her time as a program leader for GiGi’s Playhouse – a center of excellence for children and adults with Down Syndrome.

Leading the organization’s growth with his Board of Director’s service as Board Chair, Matt Cullina has concluded his second consecutive term. Without this invaluable guidance of the Board and the executive team, many of the initiatives over the last six years would not have come to fruition. The executive team wishes to thank Cullina for his dedication, leadership and commitment to the mission.

With Cullina’s departure, the ITRC announced Matthew Donahue, LexisNexis, was elected the new Board Chair.

Donahue has served on the board for over three years with positions as Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer. He is director of Market Planning for the Tax and Revenue business unit at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. Donahue headed successful change management initiatives with federal and state government agencies.

 “I am thrilled to have Matthew on our board in this new capacity,” Velasquez said. “We are eager for Matthew to bring his wealth of knowledge to his new position as Board Chair, and to help us achieve our mission to educate and empower all our stakeholders of identity crime.”

To see a full list of the Board of Directors, click here.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud, and privacy issues. Through public and private support, ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: https://www.idtheftcenter.org.

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

While the number of breaches in 2019 increased, the number of sensitive records exposed decreased

SAN DIEGO, January 28, 2020 – Today, the Identity Theft Resource Center®, a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity crime, released its annual End-of-Year Data Breach Report for 2019 with the support of the report’s long-time sponsor CyberScout®, a global leader in identity theft resolution, data defense and employee benefits services.

According to the report, the number of U.S. data breaches tracked in 2019 (1,473) increased 17 percent from the total number of breaches reported in 2018 (1,257). However, 2019 saw 164,683,455 sensitive records exposed, a 65 percent decrease from 2018 (471,225,862). The 2018 Marriott data breach exposed 383 million records alone, significantly skewing the data.

Download the report here: https://www.idtheftcenter.org/2019-data-breaches/

 “The increase in the number of data breaches during 2019, while not surprising, is a serious issue,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “It would appear that 2018 was an anomaly in how many data breaches were reported and the number of records exposed. The 2019 reporting year sees a return to the pattern of the ever-increasing number of breaches and volume of records exposed. Because that means more consumers are becoming victims, the ITRC will continue to help them by providing guidance on the best ways to navigate the dangers of exposed personally identifiable information (PII) from a data breach and the risks of identity crime as a result.”

“This year’s report paints a mixed view of the landscape as we continue to work with businesses and consumers alike to thwart cyber criminals and contain their damage,” said Matt Cullina, CyberScout’s EVP of Strategic Partnerships and Managing Director of Global Markets; and Board Chair of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “The overall increase in breaches is certainly concerning. However, the extraordinary drop in the number of records exposed and the incredible feat of cutting the sensitive PII exposed by two thirds, indicates that we may be moving in a good direction with regards to the extent of the damage associated with breaches. Businesses and consumers need to continue to be vigilant in protecting data and systems, ensuring they have current protections in place, because even non-sensitive data exposure can lead to more serious issues.”

Another critical finding was that “hacking” was responsible for the highest percentage of data breaches (39 percent) and the highest number of non-sensitive records exposed (81 percent). “Unauthorized access” was the second most common breach method identified with nearly the same percentage as hacking at 36.5 percent. Unauthorized access continued to be a catch-all category with little transparency on the actual method of intrusion throughout 2019.

For the second straight year, the business sector had the most data breaches (644), while the medical/healthcare sector had the second most (525). The government/military sector had the fewest amount of breaches in 2019 at 83.

The ITRC has also now tracked over 10,000 publicly-notified data breaches since 2005, hitting that milestone in the spring of 2019.

For anyone that has been a victim of a data breach, the ITRC recommends downloading its free app to manage the various aspects of an individual’s data breach case.

Consumers and victims can receive free support and guidance from a knowledgeable live-advisor by calling 888.400.5530 or visiting www.idtheftcenter.org to live-chat.

###

About the Identity Theft Resource Center

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud and privacy issues. Through public and private support, the ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its contact center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
C: 619-368-4373
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

About CyberScout

Since 2003, CyberScout® has set the standard for full-spectrum identity, privacy and data security services, offering proactive protection, employee benefits, education, resolution, identity management and consulting as well as breach preparedness and response programs. CyberScout products and services are offered globally by 660 client partners to more than 17.5 million households worldwide, and CyberScout is the designated identity theft services provider for more than 750,000 businesses through cyber insurance policies. CyberScout combines extensive experience with high-touch service to help individuals, government, nonprofit and commercial clients minimize risk and maximize recovery.

CyberScout
Heather McLaughlin
media@cyberscout.com

The ITRC reflects on its 20th anniversary, envisioning what the future holds for identity crime victims

SAN DIEGO, December 19, 2019 – Today, the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity crime, proudly announced its 20th anniversary. Over the ITRC’s twenty-year history, the organization has grown from the vision of a single person, a victim of identity theft who wanted to help others, into a collaborative movement engaged with consumers, victims, business and government stakeholders to make changes for victims.

“I feel an extraordinary sense of pride and accomplishment when I look in the rearview mirror at the progress the ITRC has made in bringing awareness to victim assistance and consumer protection, and acknowledging the impact and trauma victims of economic crime experience,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “More policy and decision makers acknowledge the economic and social importance of serving the vastly underserved population of identity crime and cybercrime victims as a result of our efforts.”

While the ITRC is proud of what it has accomplished, the organization is focused on what lies ahead. Fraud losses are currently in excess of hundreds of millions of dollars per year. As long as fraudsters continue to attack cyber infrastructures, the ITRC will continue to assist everyone who is caught up by those outcomes. The ITRC will hold the hands of victims as they seek resolution. The organization will continue to leverage technology to assist victims and consumers, as well as be the voice of clarity in a space full of conflicting and confusing information.

As 2019 wraps up and we head into 2020, the ITRC looks to all of the stakeholders – consumers, businesses and government – to support it as it looks to create impactful, sustainable changes that will minimize the impacts and mitigate the harm of identity crime.

To learn more about the Identity Theft Resource Center, visit www.idtheftcenter.org.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud and privacy issues. Through public and private support, the ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Contact: Charity Lacey, VP of Communications

CLacey@idtheftcenter.org

O: 858-634-6390

James E. Lee named the Chief Operating Officer and Kim Allman added to the Board of Directors

SAN DIEGO, October 10, 2019 – The Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity crime, is pleased to announce that James E. Lee was brought on as its Chief Operating Officer. Lee is an independent consultant and the former EVP, CMO and Director of Waratek, an Irish application security company. Lee also served as Senior Vice President for Consumer & Public Affairs as well as Chief Marketing Officer for Atlanta-based data pioneer Choicepoint and Global Public Affairs and Communication Executive at International Paper Company. Lee is a long-time ITRC supporter and has served as the Board of Directors Chair in the past.

“I am thrilled to have James join our team in a new capacity,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “We are eager for James to bring his vast expertise to the organization, allowing us to strengthen our capabilities and continue to strive towards our mission to educate and empower all of the stakeholders about identity and cybercrime issues.”

The ITRC has also announced Kim Allman was elected to its Board of Directors. Allman is the Director of Government Affairs for Symantec and joined their team following the acquisition of LifeLock. She leads efforts on privacy and consumer cyber safety. Allman is a veteran of Capitol Hill and the state capitols and served six years in the Obama Administration leading government affairs efforts for the Corporation National and Community Service. In addition, Allman ran the national state legislative programs for the Recording Association of America (RIAA) and TechAmerica. She was also the PAC director and Government Affairs Manager for MCIWorldCom’s Southeast Region and Press Secretary for Congresswoman Louise Slaughter.

“I am pleased to welcome Kim to our board and look forward to working with her on how to best advocate for the victims of identity and cybercrime with key business and legislative stakeholders,” Velasquez said. “Her experience and skills will strengthen our capabilities and understanding as we continue towards our mission of assisting victims of identity and cybercrime with remediating their cases.”

As part of leading the organization’s growth with their Board of Director’s service, both Paul Bond and Susan Grant have come to the end of their second consecutive terms. The executive team wishes to thank Bond and Grant for their leadership and commitment to the mission.

During Bond’s two terms on the board, he brought his skills in the legal areas of data security, privacy and artificial intelligence to the forefront in guiding the ITRC. Bond is a partner at Holland & Knight LLP and a Privacy Law Essentials for Corporate Counsel Teacher at Rutgers Law School. During Grant’s two terms on the board, she brought her knowledge on consumer protection and consumer advocacy to the organization’s victim-centered voice. Grant is the director of Consumer Protection for the Consumer Federation of America.

To see a full list of the Board of Directors, click here.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud, and privacy issues. Through public and private support, ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

ITRC joins far-reaching initiative to promote the awareness of online safety and privacy

SAN DIEGO, October 1, 2019 – Today, the Identity Theft Resource Center announced its participation in National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, held annually during the month of October. ITRC is a NCSAM Champion and joins a growing global effort to promote the awareness of online safety and privacy. NCSAM is a collaborative effort among businesses, government agencies, colleges and universities, associations, nonprofit organizations and individuals committed to this year’s NCSAM theme of ‘Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT.’ which encourages everyone to #BeCyberSmart through cybersecurity best practices.

“Cybersecurity is an issue that affects the online safety and privacy of every consumer,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “The Identity Theft Resource Center is committed to encouraging proactive online behavior and empowers consumers to prioritize their own cybersecurity as part of maintaining a healthy identity hygiene. We are honored to be a part of NCSAM this year.”

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Conference

This year, the ITRC will be a panelist as part of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Conference on October 2nd in Washington D.C. discussing solutions and best practices for the financial services practitioners for how to manage identity theft victims in their practice.

Texas State University – Identity Theft 101 & Hands-On Privacy Workshops

On October 9th at Texas State University, the ITRC will present its Identity Theft 101 & Hands-On Privacy workshops giving students, faculty and staff some general identity theft how-tos including covering what is identity theft and how to reduce the risk of becoming a victim. The Hands-on Privacy workshop will also cover privacy best practices for mobile devices, when installing apps and when engaging on social media platforms.

ABA Financial Fraud Prevention, Strategy and Investigation Conference

On October 16th-18th, ITRC CEO Eva Velasquez will share case studies of how the ITRC has partnered with financial institutions that integrate their services to help customers affected by identity theft at the ABA Financial Fraud Prevention, Strategy and Investigation Conference.

Symantec Webinar – National Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Protect It

On October 16th, Velasquez will also co-host a webinar with Symantec sharing the top tips for keeping your data secure.

Better Identity Coalition – 2019 Policy Forum

ITRC will then co-host the Better Identity Coalition 2019 Policy Forum alongside the FIDO Alliance and National Cyber Security Alliance around the theme of “Identity, Authentication and the Road Ahead: A Cybersecurity Policy Forum.”

ITRC and Generali General Assistance will provide a first look at the upcoming report on the generational perspectives on identity protection before its full release later in October. Register to livestream the event here.

Now in its 16th year, NCSAM continues to build momentum and impact with the ultimate goal of providing all Americans with the information they need to stay safe and more secure online. ITRC is proud to support this effort to educate consumers on their online safety awareness which is co-led by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

For more information about NCSAM 2019 and how to participate in a wide variety of activities, visit staysafeonline.org/ncsam. You can also follow and use the official NCSAM hashtag #BeCyberSmart on social media throughout the month.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud, and privacy issues. Through public and private support, ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

Identity crime victim assistance non-profit to discuss the real impact of the settlement to consumers

SAN DIEGO, September 5 – Yahoo, Inc. announced claim forms are now available for the settlement multiple data breach incidents which occurred between 2012 through 2016 and resulted in over 3 billion user account credentials being compromised. While the settlement has not yet been finalized by the Court, the proposed settlement claim form allows consumers to file to be included in the settlement fund.

Morgan and Morgan, court-appointed “Class Counsel”, announced in a press release that claims form for possible settlement class members were available. In a move that would appear to address the challenges previously faced for those impacted by Equifax Settlement claim, the form states that “To the extent all such amounts exceed $117.5 million, then the amount of each claim for Alternative Compensation, Out-of-Pocket Costs, and for fees paid by Paid Users and Small Business Users will be reduced proportionally (by a percentage) until the total payments exhaust the Settlement Fund” – a sign that claims will be reviewed and may be variable based on the number of claims submitted.

“When we looked at the Equifax settlement process, we predicted that consumers would bear the brunt of the burden of proof moving forward,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “We counsel victims that they document all of the steps they take as part of their remediation process, but now data breach victims will have to provide physical proof to see redress in settlements.”

As the leader in victim assistance in identity crime cases, the Identity Theft Resource Center is available to provide expert perspective on the potential impacts to consumers and the relevance of this announcement for those impacted by the 2012-2016 breaches. With over 3 million consumers receiving assistance through ITRC’s website, Live Chat, mobile app or call-center advisors since its founding, executives from the organization were on the frontlines of the how victims are impacted by identity crimes – including data breaches. The ITRC’s ID Theft Help App has been lauded as the go-to tool for documenting a victim’s process for remediating any potential data breach impacts by CNBCNBC NationalCBS News and Consumer Reports, among others.

Additionally, victims stated in The AftermathTM: Equifax, One Year Later that they felt that companies that are responsible for housing their data aren’t taking their jobs as serious as they should. Other non-financial impacts around identity theft are explored in the annual AftermathTM report.

Members of the ITRC’s executive team are available for interview via local affiliate, Skype, phone or satellite studio.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud, and privacy issues. Through public and private support, ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

ITRC Launches New Blog Series Looking At The Most Impactful Breaches Since 2005

SAN DIEGO, September 5 – For 20 years, the Identity Theft Resource Center, a nationally recognized non-profit established to support victims of identity theft, has worked to empower identity theft victims by providing support and guidance in resolving their cases and educating consumers on ways to minimize their risk of falling victim to identity theft. Since it started recording data breaches in 2005, ITRC has cataloged over 10,000 publicly-noticed breaches.

ITRC’s 2018 End-of-Year Data Breach Report, sponsored by CyberScout, revealed a 126 percent increase in exposed consumer data containing sensitive personally identifiable information (PII) and 1.68 billion consumer records containing non-sensitive PII. Despite fewer breach incidents in 2018 than 2017, there was more consumer data compromised. In its new series, 10,000 Breaches Later, the ITRC looks at what breaches created the most impact – to consumers, to industry professionals and how they changed infrastructure needs.

To bring awareness to the 10,000 data breaches benchmark, ITRC is providing a retrospective on the top breaches for consumers using Breach Clarity, a free tool for consumers impacted by data breaches to understand their risk; benchmark breaches that created systemic change and the most impactful breaches in areas such as the largest retail, business, medical, government, banking and education breaches as part of an eight-part blog series.

“The data we create, collect, store, use and disseminate is increasing at an exponential rate,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “The 10,000-breach milestone is more than just a number; it represents a fundamental shift in how we engage with the world.  As important as it is to recognize that 10,000 breaches is an extraordinary number, it is equally important to realize that the unique data points number in the billions.  All stakeholders need to behave responsibly with data so we do not achieve the next milestone even more quickly, which we are on pace to do. Consumers must understand how much data they create themselves, and understand their individual risks in order to lessen the chances of self-compromise.  Businesses need to evaluate what they are collecting and storing, and be good stewards of that data. Government has an obligation to establish best practices frameworks, reasonable regulation and follow these protocols as well as enforce them.”

In 2018, the business sector had the largest amount of data breaches but the lowest rate of exposure per breach. The health care field had the second-largest amount of breaches and the highest rate of exposure per breach.

https://www.idtheftcenter.org/10000-data-breaches-blog-series/ 

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud, and privacy issues. Through public and private support, ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
clacey@idtheftcenter.org

Child Identity Theft Awareness Day reminds parents to protect their child’s most important asset

SAN DIEGO, August 29 – This Sunday, September 1, is Child Identity Theft Awareness Day. To mark the observance, the Identity Theft Resource Center has some suggestions for parents on how to protect their child’s most important assets – his/her personally identifiable information (PII). Too often, a child will not know he/she has been a victim of child identity theft until after turning 18-years-old and attempting to establish credit. In recent years, hackers have targeted kids’ PII to take advantage of clean credit that no one will be monitoring for years to come.

According to Javelin Strategy and Research’s 2018 Child Identity Fraud Study, there were more than one million reported cases of child identity theft in the U.S. in 2017, with most cases involving children under eight-years-old.

“Look for the warning signs that someone is using your child’s identity like an adult in the adult world,” said Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the Identity Theft Resource Center. “This includes a credit card bill, jury summons, driver’s license renewal, bills for medical care or other purchases; collection calls or notices; and pre-approved credit card offers. Do not assume it is a mistake or clerical error. Do not ignore these red flags. You need to follow up on them right away.”

The same study from Javelin also found that in 60 percent of the cases, the child knew their identity thief. In contrast to adults, where only seven percent of victims knew their identity thief. According to www.ftc.gov/exploredata, so far in 2019, there have been 8,583 identity theft victims 19-years-old or younger, compared to 14,242 in all of 2018. A majority of those cases were employment or tax-related fraud.

Parents can request a credit report to look it over for suspicious activity. If the child is under 14-years-old, the adult must prove they have a right to access and see the information. ITRC also encourages parents to see if their children were affected by the Equifax data breach. If their information was exposed, read this article for steps on how to file a claim for a minor. For more information on how to address a case of child identity theft, visit our website.

If you believe that you, or your child, has been the victim of identity theft, please reach out to the ITRC for no-cost assistance in remediating your case. Consumers in need of help can call the toll-free number – 888.400.5530 – or visit the website www.idtheftcenter.org to Live Chat with an advisor. Live advisors are available Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST except holidays.

ITRC executives will be available for interviews on this topic Friday, August 30, and Tuesday, September 3, 2019.

About the Identity Theft Resource Center®

Founded in 1999, the Identity Theft Resource Center® (ITRC) is a nationally recognized non-profit organization established to support victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and to broaden public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cybersecurity, scams/fraud, and privacy issues. Through public and private support, ITRC provides no-cost victim assistance and consumer education through its call center, website, social media channels, live chat feature and ID Theft Help app. For more information, visit: http://www.idtheftcenter.org

Identity Theft Resource Center
Charity Lacey
VP of Communications
O: 858-634-6390
clacey@idtheftcenter.org