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ID verification more crucial than ever before

Mar 03, 2013 Dave King

As the rate of identity theft continues to rise in the United States and abroad, companies have to ensure they are taking all of the necessary precautionary measures to protect consumer information, as well as corporate data. ID verification standards have evolved rapidly in light of the proliferation of new threats, including corporate identity theft.

Businesses should always follow guidance from federal statutes regarding data security and ID verification, while going a step beyond to safeguard information from new threats. By keeping a close eye on accounts receivable and accounts payable, companies can deter instances of long-term fraud and identity theft, as these are often the most devastating to both finances and reputation.

Problem increases in Idaho
The Associated Press recently reported that identity theft cases in Idaho have increased substantially in the past several years, stating that law enforcement has found it difficult to cut down on the crime. According to the news provider, the state had 905 complaints related to identity theft last year, which represents a nearly 40 percent increase from 2011. 

"You name it, we've seen it," Idaho Falls police sergeant Phil Grimes told the source. "Credit card issues, people stealing Social Security numbers ... Just about anything you can dream up is taking place here as well ... I don't want to say (agencies) won't cooperate, but (identity theft) gets put on the back burner compared to that agency's own crimes. Getting cooperation, then simply finding out who is doing the identity theft is difficult, even if it's in your own jurisdiction."

The source explained that 46 percent of all cases originated from fraudulent government documents, and that this issue has yet to be resolved by lawmakers.

Nationwide epidemic
The Federal Trade Commission recently released its latest report regarding the most common complaints fielded in 2012. According to the agency, it was the thirteenth straight year that identity theft was at the top of the list, accounting for 369,132 complaints out of the the two million fielded by the FTC.

The report found that 18 percent of all consumer complaints stemmed from identity theft, while a variety of other issues such as potentially illegal actions taken by banks also made the top 10.

Enterprises need to take a proactive approach to ID verification to deter the threat of identity theft, as only one instance of the crime originating from a company's systems can lead to hurt reputation and incurred financial losses.