ID Theft Threats

The U.S. Congress has been trying for years to pass uniform legislation to curb spyware and adware.

Now, identity theft concerns are also being pushed forward, with a federally convened task force urging Congress to look towards a new national strategy for punishing identity fraud.

Identity fraud is already illegal in the U.S. but, among its recommendations, the new plan calls for rewriting existing criminal laws to:

  • Penalize creators and distributors of malicious spyware
  • Increase mandatory minimum prison sentences for particular electronic data theft
  • Allow victims of identity theft to receive monetary compensation for both lost time and direct financial losses

While some privacy advocates feel the proposal falls short of solving the root of the problem, ID theft threats continue to climb.

For the seventh year in a row, identity theft topped this years U.S. Federal Trade Commission report on consumer fraud complaints, accounting for 36% of the 674,354 complaints received in 2006.

For more hard-hitting facts and figures that show the nature of our cyber-world, browse our Spyware Stats page of the Spyware Education Center.