London - 27th October 2011 - Research* out today reveals students are not taking enough measures to protect themselves from identity fraud. According to the research by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) over three quarters (76%) of students have not checked their credit rating in the last year, with two thirds (66%) admitting they have never had it checked.
Responding to this research, leading ID fraud expert Equifax, is urging students to regularly check their credit report as it will alert them to any unusual activity and if a fraudster is using their personal details.
“As well as checking their credit report, there are a number of actions students can take to help limit the chances of them becoming victims of fraud,” advises Neil Munroe, External Affairs Director for Equifax.
“Student accommodation offers fraudsters the perfect opportunity to steal valuable personal information, often by picking up post in communal hallways, therefore re-directing your post every time you move accommodation is vital. Having post sent to a family address and getting financial data sent recorded delivery will also reduce personal details getting into the wrong hands. We also recommend students ensure their mobile and laptop are password protected and are not left lying around.”
“The Metropolitan Police claims that it takes just three pieces of personal information to commit ID fraud, but many people don’t realise how important it is to keep their data safe,” continues Munroe. “Staying safe online is also a must for students and graduates and they should remain vigilant and restrict the amount of personal data they put online, including that on recruitment websites. Posting CV’s online can increase the risk of falling victim to ID fraud. Do not put your address, full date of birth or any data that can be used by others online.”
To help students stay protected, Equifax provides the following top 10 tips:
Tackling the threat of identity theft and fraud, Equifax Identity Watch Pro gives consumers unlimited, easy online access to their latest credit file, with automatic alerts within 24 hours of key changes to their credit report. It costs £7.50 per month. Or for just £2.99 per month, Equifax Identity Watch Lite makes monitoring a credit report easy by automatically alerting the individual within seven days of key changes.
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