This week is National Identity Fraud Prevention Week where a number of organisations from the public and private sector begin a month-long drive to help combat identity fraud in the UK.
During this week Action Fraud is reminding you how to keep your identity safe with some simple tips:
- Don’t throw out anything with your name, address or financial details without shredding it first.
- Be careful about what information you share on social networking sites, and check your privacy settings.
- Monitor your credit status by getting regular copies of your credit report from a credit reference agency.
- Install anti-virus software and make sure it is kept up to date.
- Regularly change your passwords and protect mobile devices with them.
- Never click on suspicious hyperlinks.
- Look into any mail that does not arrive when you are expecting it.
The National Fraud Authority (NFA) who runs Action Fraud estimates that identity theft costs individuals a total of £1.2 billion each year.
In January 2012 the NFA surveyed a nationally representative sample of more than 4,000 UK adults online and found that 9.4 per cent had been an identity fraud victim in the previous 12 months.
Stephen Harrison, Chief Executive Officer, National Fraud Authority said: “Identity Fraud can have serious implications and this week is an opportunity for everyone to consider the simple steps they can take to protect themselves.
“More and more of us now use the internet to carry out transactions and can be vulnerable to fraudsters, but it is easy to make it harder for criminals to steal your identity.
“You should always check financial statements and raise any suspicious transactions, monitor your credit status regularly, investigate any mail that does not arrive when you are expecting it, do not click on links from emails that appear to be from your bank asking for personal details, and install and keep anti virus software up to date.”
The recent launch of the NFA backed The Devil’s In Your Details campaign is raising awareness of the importance of protecting personal information and aims to remind the public to check that who they share their details with is genuine, whether this be on the phone, in person or online
Read more about ‘Don’t let it be You’ – a joint initiative set up by a taskforce of organisations from the public and private sector to raise awareness of the risk of identity fraud.
Please note: Action Fraud is not responsible for the content on external websites.
To report a fraud, call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or use our online fraud reporting tool.