New HSB Survey Finds Identity Theft is On the Rise

New HSB Survey Finds Identity Theft is On the Rise

Security technology is improving, yet our personal information is more vulnerable than ever. At least, that’s the takeaway from a new survey by HSB, which found that more than a third (39 percent) of Americans reported that their information had been compromised in some way. Of those, 51 percent had learned of the breach in the past year.

The numbers represent a five percent increase over those from a similar HSB survey two years ago. And the number of customers affected by identity theft crept from 18 percent to 21 percent over the same time period.

As a provider of cyber insurance, HSB also pitched credit monitoring services as a potential solution to the problem. Many people turned to free credit monitoring services in response to a breach, with 28 percent of those affected learning that their identity had been stolen thanks to a credit report.  

“Consumers are demanding, and getting, personal services when their data is compromised,” said HSB VP Timothy Zeilman. “Access to credit and fraud monitoring, identity theft case management, legal help and other professional services is increasingly important.”

Thankfully, there is some cause for optimism. The survey revealed that actual cyberattacks with hacking and computer viruses are on the decline (32 to 26 percent), which indicates that the current security measures – including biometrics – are effective against malware.

The challenge is combating fraudsters that manage to acquire legitimate credentials, which is why companies like Aflac Japan have recently been embracing biometrics. BioCatch has similarly pushed behavioral biometrics as a potential solution for insurance providers.

April 26, 2019 – by Eric Weiss