Identity theft has continued to grow in size and scope over the last few decades, as fraudsters become more skilled at stealing information and hiding their presence from businesses and law enforcement officials. Additionally, companies seem to be lagging in ID verification processes, leading to many instances of fraud.
KWTX-10 Texas recently reported that a woman from Temple, Texas, has been sentenced to two years in prison following a guilty plea for involvement in an identity theft scam. The woman, Ashley Dawn Stokes, was part of a ring that was comprised of two other individuals, all of whom were charged for conspiracy to commit identity theft. The three criminals stole personal information from mailboxes to create fraudulent accounts and make purchases at retail stores. Smith will have to pay more than $3,200 in restitution, in addition to the prison time. By using more adequate ID verification processes and products, retailers can avoid such instances from occurring in their stores. Protecting consumer data needs to be a focal point for merchants, as much to preserve their reputations as to stay within regulatory compliance statutes.