Despite a rise in phishing activity and the increased regularity of reported data breaches, instances of identity fraud in the United States actually decreased in 2005, according to the 2006 Identity Fraud Survey from Javelin Strategy & Research. The survey reports that there were 8.9 million adult I.D. fraud victims in the U.S. in 2005, down from 9.3 million in 2004.
The survey data was collected from the responses of 505 fraud victims out of 5,000 total consumer survey participants. Of the cases in which the source of the information that was used to commit identity fraud was known, a business was the source 29 percent of the time. The causes of information leakage from businesses were data breaches (6 percent), fraudulent transaction processing (7 percent) and employee misconduct (15 percent). <<<