To reduce the occurrence of identity theft, both the consumer and financial agency must stay aware of suspicious activity. Every year, there are thousands of cases of credit card fraud, many of which may go unreported for weeks or even years at a time.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, there were more than 250,000 cases of identity theft during 2010, approximately three times as many than in 2001. The internet and mobile phones have increased the avenues in which hackers can gain consumer information, but what must remain constant is the vigilance of the financial institution in alleviating the situation right away. Many Americans are at risk for identity theft, even overseas. Recently in Rhode Island, 43-year-old Evgueni Tetioukhine was sentenced to prison for identity theft. He stole the identity of an American living in Ireland. With his assumed identity, Tetioukhine was able to gain a $260,000 mortgage, $14,000 in student loans, a Social Security card and a passport, The Associated Press reports. Tetioukhine was able to use the fake identity for more than 20 years, until he was finally arraigned this year.