High Income Households at Greater Risk of Financial Fraud
According to a new survey from Capital One, people who earn more than $200,000 annually had almost double the amount of financial fraud instances as those earning less than $50,000 a year. The 2018 CreditWise® from Capital One® Identity Fraud & Protection Survey revealed that 54.8% of all adults have experienced some form of financial fraud or theft, and 26.6% have experienced credit fraud.
Respondents in a higher income bracket also reported a higher instance of credit card theft, credit fraud, and data breach exposure. For example, 58.3% of high income earners reported credit fraud, compared to 17.2% of low income earners.
Among those who experienced financial theft, 37.2% said they had a loss of money, while 25.5% said they had a negative financial impact as a result of the fraud. Only one in four respondents said they felt confident about the security of their personal information online.
One of the best ways to reduce the impact of financial fraud or credit fraud is to monitor your credit reports from multiple bureaus. If you catch suspicious activity early on, you can have it removed from your report and you can freeze any accounts associated with the incident. Fifty-five percent of respondents said the last time they checked their credit, they only looked at one report. This is not ideal, as some credit information may show on one report but not another.
To help consumers protect their credit and quickly detect fraud, Capital One is adding some unique tools on their CreditWise app. The app tracks your social security number and alerts you when it is used for a new credit application. In addition, it notifies you when something meaningful changes in your Experian or TransUnion credit report. Finally, it scans the dark web to look for your email address, social security number, and other information on hacking forums and websites. These websites often sell personal information to be used for identity fraud in the future. With an early warning, you can take action to stop fraudsters from draining your accounts.
CreditWise is completely free, and available to anyone, not just Capital One customers.
“Identity fraud is a huge concern among Americans. With these new features, Capital One is offering a free service to help all consumers protect their credit and personal identity,” said Joe Whitchurch, head of CreditWise for Capital One.
Alerts can be sent via text or email, so you can receive up-to-date information no matter where you are. The app is available today on both Android and Apple devices.