Callcredit nets 80 per cent of identity thieves

Credit reference agency Callcredit has unveiled an identity fraud alert system for lenders that identifies up to 80 per cent of account take-over ID fraud.

Callcredit's GeoFraud reduces the risk of account take-over ID fraud by highlighting changes of address that are suspect and allowing the lender to investigate them further.

ID Fraud facts
  • More than 10m people in the UK are at risk from ID fraud (1)
  • ID fraud is one of the fastest growing types of fraud.
  • 120,000 people were victims of ID fraud in 2004.
  • Since 1999 it has grown by 600 per cent.
  • It takes up to 16 months to discover you've been a victim of ID fraud (2)
  • It can take a typical victim 60 hours to prove they've been a victim of ID fraud.(3)

Callcredit director Graham Lund says:

"We can work out from an existing postcode where an individual is likely to move to so if a lender receives a change of address request which is outside what would be considered the norm GeoFraud will flag that change of address for further investigation.

"By applying GeoFraud software to all change of address requests it will identify 12 per cent for further investigation and 80 per cent of attempted fraudulent changes of address will be within those flagged. It saves lenders time and money and protects their customers from the hassle and cost of ID fraud."

How does account take-over ID fraud happen?
  • The criminal gathers personal information about the victim.
  • They contact the lender masquerading as the genuine cardholder and ask that mail be redirected to a new address.
  • The card is then reported lost and a new one requested.
How to protect yourself from ID fraud
  • Shred any personal documents before disposing of them.
  • Be vigilant, log on to www.mycallcredit.com and check your credit file.
  • Write to lenders who are listing a credit facility you don't want and cancel it.
  • When you cut up a card or stop using it inform the lender.
Editors Notes
  1. More than 30m people in the UK hold an average of 2.3 personal credit and charge cards but
  2. 35 per cent of these cards are dormant (Source APACS) and susceptible to account take-over.
  3. A report by personal protection advisers, the CPP Group found that it took 480 days or 16 months to discover identity theft.
  4. It can take a typical ID fraud victim 60 hours to prove their innocence (Source CIFAS).