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Identity fraud increases 14%

The number of identity fraud victims jumped in the first six months of 2010 as a consequence of the recession, according to a Cifas report.

Reports of identity fraud rose by 14% over the first six months of 2010 compared with the first half of last year, with the number of victims of such crimes increasing by 22% during the same period, according to figures from UK fraud prevention agency Cifas.

In the first six months of this year there were more than 50,200 recorded victims of impersonation, according to Cifas.

The report said there have been significant changes around fraudulent activity taking place since the start of the recession and identity fraud incidents are likely to increase further.

"With the first real signs of economic recovery beginning to be reported, there is every reason to assume that fraudsters will be taking notice and redoubling their efforts to take advantage," said Richard Hurley, communications manager at Cifas.

Companies need to ensure their security credentials are displayed in a prominent position on their websites, said Christian Brindley, a security expert at online security firm VeriSign.

"Consumers are aware that cases of identity fraud are rising, and that it is very easy to fall victim, so they are increasingly careful about only using obviously safe sites to shop and bank on," he said.


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