Better Business Bureau and Identity Theft Prevention–Not Just An Agency To Call To Complain

26 Oct Better Business Bureau and Identity Theft Prevention–Not Just An Agency To Call To Complain

In recent weeks, the Better Business Bureau has been in the news stressing ways that consumers can protect themselves against identity theft.  (see Denver Post blog citing a press release from a Susan Johnson of the BBB)*.   Now, the BBB joined forces with the National Foundation of Credit Counseling (NFCC) last week and launched the 2nd annual National Protect Your Identity Week (PYIW) October 17 – 24, 2009.   The BBB also held a Secure Your ID day on October 17, 2009.  The Better Business Bureau also set up a website for the public at  where consumers can take a quiz to see how secure their identities are and has gathered together a set of statistics on identity theft to educate the public on the need for extra security.

A few of the statistics cited:

  • The average victim spends an average of 44 hours recovering from identity theft
  • It is estimated that financial institutions lose an average of $4,800 to the identity thief per identity theft victim
  • Identity theft victims spend an average of $500 repairing damage to their good name and credit record
  • In 16 percent of all cases, the victim personally knew the person who had misused their personal information
  • Six percent of all victims reported a family member or relative as the person responsible for misusing their personal information

    Please explore the website, take the test, read the statistics and start protecting yourself from the costs of identity theft.

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    I'm a consumer protection lawyer in Oregon, working with people in Klamath; Lake; Jackson; Josephine; Curry; and Deschutes County. I speak regularly on bankruptcy and consumer protection issues nationwide.

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