Id Theft Alerts

October 24, 2007
Identity Theft MUCH More Costly the Previously Thought
The Center for Identify Management and Information Protection (CIMIP) at Utica College has released a new survey of identity theft based on closed case files of the Secret Service.  The survey of 470 cases found that the median actual dollar loss for identity theft victims was $31,356.

This is dramatically more than the
$5,720 estimated by Javelin Strategy and Research in their annaul identity theft survey.  The difference is attributed to the CIMIP inclusion of losses to the businesses as well as to the individual.

The survey also found the same number of victims from dumpster diving as from the Internet.  The number one source of information was at a business, around 33%.

Read more.
Security Breach Lawsuit Thrown Out
Many lawsuits have been brought after security breaches and they have met with very little success.  We now have a federal court of appeals weighing in with a decision. 

In their opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that present and future identity theft-monitoring costs are not compensable damages under Indiana's security breach notification statute. This does seem to be the precedent of the courts.

Read more (subscription required)
New Identity Theft Bill in Senate

Senators Patrick Leahy and Arlen Specter introduced the Identity Theft Enforcement and Restitution Act of 2007. The bill proposes adding protections for consumers who fall victim to identity theft. 

Provisions of the bill include:

* Giving victims the right to seek restitution for the time and money spent attempting to restore their credit.

* Expanding the jurisdiction of existing federal computer fraud to include small businesses and corporations.

* Removing the requirement that information must have been stolen from another state or country.

* Making the use of spyware or keyloggers that damage 10 or more computers a felony.

* Expanding the definition of cybercrime to include threatening to obtain or release private information.

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