By Katie Ritchie
Identity theft and fraud are serious issues. From January 1, 2005, to August 31, 2019, there have been 10,818 breaches. That comes out to 1.6 billion records compromised. According to a recent Wallethub study, South Carolina ranks 5th most vulnerable in the nation for ID theft and fraud.
Wallethub looked at 15 metrics, including identity theft complaints, average loss due to online identity theft, persons arrested for fraud per capita, and many more.
South Carolina was also 5th in the nation for the number of persons arrested for fraud per capita and compliance with the REAL ID Act.
South Carolina ranked 10th in the nation for fraud and other complaints per capita, and 11th for identity-theft complaints per capita. SC was 17th for the average amount lost due to online ID theft.
The District of Columbia was 1st most vulnerable. The most identity theft complaints per capita were in Georgia, Nevada, California, Florida, D.C. and Texas.
There are ways to protect yourself. Make sure to use a secure password and two-step verification for your primary email account and all financial accounts.
Use credit monitoring services. Services like Credit Karma and WalletHub offer free monitoring of some credit reports which can help you locate ID theft and accounts you didn’t open. Keep your contact information up to date with all of your financial institutions. If they always have your correct phone number, email address, and street address it will be harder for thieves to steal.
To see the full Wallethub report visit https://wallethub.com/edu/states-where-identity-theft-and-fraud-are-worst/17549/ .