Credit Card Theft Is the Most Feared Crime in America

Credit Card Theft Is the Most Feared Crime in America

November 6, 2014         Written By Bill Hardekopf

What do Americans worry about the most in today’s society? It’s not being the victim of a violent crime. It’s having their credit card information stolen.

According to a report from Gallup, 69% of Americans worry about having their credit card information stolen at stores.

To put matters into perspective, this same study revealed only 28% of Americans fear becoming a victim of terrorism, and 18% fear being murdered. Credit card theft was the highest ranking concern in the study, with smartphone theft being the only other crime that worries the majority (62%) of Americans.

Gallup has been conducting an annual Crime Poll since 2000, but this is the first year the company added credit card and smartphone theft to the list of potential concerns. As the statistics indicate, these are by far the most prevalent worries in the country.

Gallup found Americans with household incomes exceeding $75,000 a year are more likely to worry about credit card hacking than lower income households. An astounding 85% of respondents with annual household incomes exceeding $75,000 worried about credit card theft, compared to just 50% of lower income households.

Americans between the ages of 30 and 64 expressed the greatest concern about credit card theft, with 72% to 77% saying that they frequently or occasionally worry about it. Younger and older generations average 62%, by comparison.

The rising concern about credit card hacking is likely due to the number of data breaches that have recently occurred at retail stores in America. Gallup found 27% of those surveyed had already been affected by a credit card hack, or lived with someone who had been. Only 45% of those people reported the information to the police.

This Gallup poll was based on telephone interviews conducted between October 12 and 15, with a random sample of 1,017 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of November 6, 2014. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.


About Bill Hardekopf

Bill Hardekopf is the CEO of and covers the credit card industry from all perspectives. Bill has been involved with personal finance for over 15 years. He is a frequent contributor to Forbes, The Street and The Christian Science Monitor.
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