“A healthy fear of ID theft is a good thing,” said Gail Cunningham, spokesperson for the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, which conducted the poll. “People often become complacent, particularly with their mobile devices. When people see their wallet, credit cards or checkbook, they think of money. However, they don’t connect the dots that critical financial information may be stored on their smartphone, thus putting them at significant risk if lost or stolen.”
Consider the following:
- The sales of smartphones outpaced the sales of personal computers last year;
- Growth of smartphone sales is expected to continue for the next four years, and;
- Sixty-two percent of smartphone owners do not utilize passwords to protect their phones.
To increase awareness of identity theft, the crime that won’t go away, and provide ID theft protection resources, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC), the National Sheriffs Association (NSA) and the National Association of Triads, Inc. (NATI) are proud to join forces to host the fifth annual Protect Your Identity Week (PYIW) October 20-27 during National Crime Prevention Month.
The campaign will offer broad-based ID theft protection education in addition to focusing on the threats related to smartphones with the 2012 theme of “ID Theft Protection on the Go.”
There will be close to 100 Protect Your Identity Week events across America from October 20-27, many offering free shredding of personal documents, responsible cell phone recycling, workshops, speakers, ID theft protection handouts, and credit report reviews.
To learn more about identity theft, and to find the Protect Your Identity Week event closest to you, visit www.ProtectYourIDNow.org. The site offers educational resources, steps for victims, and a quiz to assess your risk of identity theft.