News & Resources

Two lawyers steal identities of businesses

Oct 08, 2012 Dave King

Identity theft costs businesses and individuals billions of dollars each year, and many instances of the crime are almost all-too-preventable. Businesses are responsible for protecting employees and clientele from potential threats to the best of their abilities, yet many are still found at fault for negligence leading to serious identity theft repercussions. ID verification and background checks are generally good first steps to deter identity theft from internal employees and contractors. However, there are several other potential leaks that need to be caulked when it comes to the integrity of data-hosting systems and payment processing practices. Even relatively simple steps can prevent identity theft issues from affecting a business, as adequate oversight and accounting processes can help companies quash security threats during the first stages. Early detection is key in preventing more massive losses of both money and reputation. Threats clear, sense of urgency not
The IDG News Service reports that recent court cases regarding identity thieves have illustrated just how simple it can be to steal business information - and how costly. The news provider sites two attorneys from Houston, Texas, who were recently indicted for their alleged involvement in an international identity theft conspiracy. Roger Shoss and Nicolette Loisel allegedly took advantage of business filing systems in the United States, United Kingdom, Ireland and Spain, accumulating approximately $100 million after tricking major entities such as NASDAQ and the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). Essentially, the two lawyers allegedly sought out dormant businesses and managed to file fraudulent certificates that made them active and publicly traded, using filing systems of major Wall Street competitors to successfully put them on the market. Victims continue to rise
According to IdentityTheft.info, U.S. identity theft victims number 15 million annually, while the losses total more than $50 billion. This, the source notes, could be caused by the approximately 100 million Americans who leave personal information in a place that a thief can easily reach. The website estimates that roughly 7 percent of U.S. adults have had an issue with identity theft at some point in their life, while the average cost of such a crime is roughly $35,000. Business owners need to ensure they are taking all of the precautionary measures to prevent an identity theft case from occurring on their watch. Through the use of ID verification solutions, this responsibility can be made easy.