Just last week, out of the blue, my bank contacted me. There were fraudulent charges on my account, even though my credit card rested right inside of my wallet. The place where I consider my cards to be safe. Luckily, I have fraud protection. The bank immediately canceled my card and sent me a new one.
In 2017 alone, there have been more data breaches than ever recorded. Of course, the Equifax breach in September 2017 greatly contributed to the staggering numbers for the year. After all, the attack jeopardized nearly 145.5 million American’s personal and confidential information. What’s more jaw-dropping is that the total data breaches as of October 2017 increased 630% from 2016. That is a 5,000% increase from 2005 breach records.
Identity theft and fraud can occur from a variety of means. With tactics as simple as dumpster diving for old mail to major data breaches like Equifax, hackers and thieves have no limitations. What you may not know is that where you live could make you a bigger target for identity theft and fraud.
WalletHub graded all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia to find out which states were most vulnerable to identity theft and fraud. They analyzed data on complaints and average loss amount from identity theft and fraud, along with the policy that surrounds this sort of crime. These 15 states are considered the most vulnerable.
The good news for Minnesota is it ranked #1 for identity theft and fraud policy. The state of Minnesota’s ID Theft Freeze Law allows residents to freeze their credit report at any time if fraudulent activity or identity theft is suspected. The freeze prevents identity thieves from accessing a person’s credit history, getting new credit cards, or having loans approved.
Next: New legislation may protect these residents.