The UK has been ranked the worst county in Europe in terms of identity fraud cases according to a new research study. The research was carried out to help mark UK Fraud Prevention Month and found that almost 25% of all UK residents have been some type of victim of identity fraud compared to the overall European average of 17%. Even in Russia where identity fraud is thought to be a large problem only 20% of the population has been victimized.
About 75% of those who live in the UK have been exposed to ID fraud at some point with most people seeing a fake phishing email that states it is from a bank. These typical emails then request the email account holder to send back a return email with the requested personal information in order to update their security. Although phishing is popular everywhere, it appears that in the UK the risk of receiving this type of email is higher than in the rest of Europe.
However, it is not just cyber hackers and criminals that are attacking British homes as another 10% of Britons have been targeted for scams that take place in a similar manner but through the post. This way fraudsters can still gain access to sensitive information they can use to steal an identity.
ID fraud is a serious problem with some people having houses purchased in their names illegally, although in most cases victims only lose about £1,000 pounds. The cost of identity fraud on average in other countries is much higher with Germany having an average cost of £29,000 per victim and Italian victims losing on average about £13,000.