Oct 20, 2011 Karen Umpierre
A first-of-its-kind meeting will be held this week in Atlanta to help officials who oversee state business records become more aware of fraud prevention strategies, WTRF-TV reports.
Business identity theft is on the rise, and the National Association of Secretaries of State Business Identity Theft Forum has been devised to combat it. The function will feature a panel of experts including Secretaries of State and business division leaders from 20 different states. "Secretaries of State want to warn businesses, particularly small and mid-size business owners, that this type of crime can be financially devastating," said Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler. "Business identities are uniquely valuable, because they often have an established credit history that can be worth a lot of money to fraudsters." Gessler added that as co-chair of the NASS Business Identity Theft Task Force, he's seen more than 300 companies in Colorado alone be defrauded by identity thieves, resulting in losses of over $3.5 million. The forum will also include consumer advocates and representatives from federal, state and local government, such as the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, U.S. Secret Service/Electronic Crimes Task Force, Georgia Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection and the Georgia Technology Authority.