The Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Network monitors the history of fraud and identity theft complaints. Their report on calendar year 2012 highlights the 2,061,495 cases of fraud, identity theft, and other infractions that were reported to the organization from every state, with Florida, Georgia and California leading with the most reports. That’s over 2 million cases of fraud and theft that were reported, but what of the ones that went undetected? While some individuals, business, and organizations were vigilant enough to notice fraud as it happened, many others either don’t know where to begin looking or are being hustled by lambs in sheep’s clothing.
Predictive analytics could be helpful for understanding the patterns of people who commit this type of crime. With the number of cases of fraud and theft occurring each year rising significantly, though, predictive analytics needs a helping hand. Fraud and identity theft are occurring in increasingly creative, sneaky ways, many of which involve hiding actions behind different names or other identity tags. Identity fraud not only affects the customer, it also affects that person’s bank and other vendors when identity theft strikes. The imperative to stop identity theft and fraud is significant on both individual and systemic levels.