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31% Of Floridians Say They Have Been A Victim Of Identity Fraud, AAA Says

By on October 11, 2017 in WNDB News

Florida – Nearly one-third of all Floridians have been a victim of identity theft or fraud in the past two years, according to a recent AAA survey, and the auto group has tips to protect consumers from identity theft.

The AAA Consumer Pulse™ survey found that 31% of Floridians say they have experienced identity fraud or theft in the last two years and that the most common types of identity theft include fraudulent credit card use, ATM withdrawals, and tax refund theft. AAA says that, according to a Javelin Strategy & Research 2016 Identity Fraud Study, identity thieves stole $16 billion from 15.4 million victims nationwide last year.

“Every two minutes another consumer becomes a victim of identity fraud,” Josh Carrasco, spokesperson, AAA – The Auto Club Group says. “It is vital for consumers to take steps now to keep their financial and personal information secure. One way to prevent identity theft is to sign up for a credit monitoring service. AAA members can sign up for ProtectMyID free of charge.”

The AAA survey found that 47% of Floridians have little trust that their information is secure at gas stations, 24% of Floridians have little trust that ATM’s are secure from identity thieves, and one in five Floridians do not feel their information is secure with online retailers. Floridians have slightly more trust in brick-and mortar stores, as only 18% have little trust that their information was secure at the traditional stores.

The survey also discovered that Floridians are taking steps to prevent identity theft. Below are the steps they are taking and the percentage of Floridians who say they are taking these steps:

  • Monitor bank accounts/credit card transactions (76%)
  • Receive email alerts on suspicious transactions (62%)
  • Check credit score (50%)

Of the 31% of Floridians who say they have been affected by identity fraud, below are the steps and the percentage who say they are taking the steps to avoid identity fraud in the future:

  • Self-monitoring of credit/accounts (55%)
  • Froze or cancelled specific cards/accounts (51%)
  • Enrolled in credit monitoring system (32%)

In order for you to protect yourself from identity fraud or theft, AAA suggests that you take the following steps:

  • Sign up for a credit monitoring service. AAA members receive essential ProtectMyID coverage – a $79 value – for free. Included in this member benefit are daily credit monitoring, email alerts, fraud resolution support, identity theft insurance, and lost wallet assistance. Go to AAA.com/IdentityTheft for more information.
  • Review your credit card statement, bank account, and credit report regularly. Be on the lookout for any unauthorized transactions and report them immediately.
  • Do not respond to unsolicited requests for personal information (this includes your name, birth date, social security number and bank account number) over the phone, by mail, or online.
  • Securely store your debit, credit and medical card information. Select PIN numbers that are easy for you to remember and don’t let anyone else see the number when you are entering it. Do not carry any record of your PIN number in your wallet. Shred credit card statements, receipts, or any medical records containing sensitive information before disposing of them. Also, ensure your credit cards and debit have been updated to include EMV or “chip” technology.

NOTE: The AAA Consumer Pulse™ Survey was conducted online among residents living in Florida from September 28, 2016 – October 6, 2016. A total of 400 residents completed the survey. Survey results have a margin of error of ± 4.9 percentage points. Responses are weighted by gender and age to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the adult population over 18 in Florida. You can find the complete survey here.

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.

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