According to the Federal Trade Commission, Identity Theft still tops the annual list of consumer complaints. The list was released last Tuesday and Identity Theft was #1 for the 11th year in a row with more than 250,000 complaints. Identity theft accounts for 19% of all consumer complaints received by the FTC last year.
Why is this such a lingering, time-tested problem? Because most people, most businesses, read about it being such a terrible problem, and then go off an do little about it. Corporations fail to train their employees on personal identity theft, and that lack of skill and prevention framework seeps into the workplace. This, in turn, leads to the loss of more data, customer records, employee files and intellectual capital.
The report also states that the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. area ranks #1 in the nation for identity theft complaints per capita. Number 2 on that list is Brownsville, Texas followed by Dunn, N.C.
The 10 top consumer complaints nationally in 2010 were:
- Identity theft
- Debt collection
- Internet services
- Prizes, sweepstakes and lotteries
- Shop-at-home and catalog sales
- Impostor scams
- Internet auctions
- Foreign money, counterfeit check scams
- Telephone and mobile services
- Credit cards
I’m betting that next year we will be celebrating the 12th consecutive year when identity theft is the leading thorn in the consumer’s side – but the fault is no one’s but those who fail to take action.
John Sileo speaks and consults professionally on identity theft. His clients include the Department of Defense, Homeland Security and hundreds of corporations and associations of all sizes. Contact him directly on 800.258.8076.