Newly released study shows online retail fraud attempts increased by 30% in past year
SEATTLE, WA, NOVEMBER 25, 2015 — Scott Smith, president of CreditRepair.com, a leading provider of credit report repair services, responded to newly released data from ACI Worldwide, reporting that online retail fraud attempts have increased by 30 percent this past year. Online fraud, or identity theft, is one of the leading causes of damage to consumer credit. With holiday online shopping expected to surpass in-store this year, for the first time ever, (Adobe holiday shopping forecast), Smith urges consumers to remain vigilant.
According to the Adobe forecast, total online sales are projected to be up 11% since last year, totaling $83 billion, and Cyber Monday is set to rake in a record $3 billion this year. “While these numbers are fantastic for the economy, the recent spike in online fraud, largely attributed to new EMV or “chip” credit cards, should concern consumers,” said Smith.
Retailers and consumers alike need to prepare. According to a statement made by Mike Braatz, senior vice president of Payments Risk Management, ACI Worldwide, “When it comes to fraud, 2015 is likely among the riskiest season retailers have ever seen; and it is critical that they prepare for a significant uptick in fraud, particularly within eCommerce channels.”
“It is nearly impossible to prevent identity theft, but it is feasible, however, to minimize the impact that this type of breach will have on your credit,” said Smith. “If any type of violation is suspected, strongly consider retaining a credit-monitoring service that can provide 24/7 censoring. This is a nearly impossible task to take on single-handedly, especially during the busy holiday season.”
Smith recommends that online shoppers consider the following before clicking the “checkout” button this holiday season:
- Utilize a secure SSL server. Be sure that the site you are shopping on has an address that begins with https://, (note in particular the “s”), which indicates that the site has protocol in place for secure communication of your personal information.
- Consider PayPal. This service provides an added layer of protection by allowing you to submit credit information through a third party, which allows creditors to verify the purchase while keeping your information secure.
- Employ strong passwords to defend your identity. Passwords should be comprised of a combination of letters, (both upper and lowercase), numbers, and symbols, at least 10 characters long. The same password should not be used on multiple accounts or websites.
Despite using safeguards, if a breach is suspected, Smith recommends immediately checking your credit report. By ordering this document and scanning it for any errors or unfair markings, you may accurately identify what information has been stolen, and can then move forward in taking the steps necessary to refortify your identity and remedy any damage that may have been incurred.
CreditRepair.com is a leading provider of credit report repair services in the United States. CreditRepair.com’s team of credit experts educates and empowers individuals to achieve the credit scores they deserve. CreditRepair.com’s technology provides members a personal online dashboard, a credit score tracker and analysis, creditor and bureau interactions, mobile apps, text and email alerts, and credit monitoring. For more information, please visit www.CreditRepair.com.