Here’s some news that could have a chilling effect on email marketing and digital advertising in general: 47% of U.S. consumers have experienced some form of financial identity theft in the last two years, Aite reports in U.S. Identity Theft: The Stark Reality.
In addition, 30% of consumers say it took them over 100 hours to recover from an identity theft incident.
People in the 35-44 age range were most affected, making up 30% of all victims.
Application fraud — an episode in which a bad actor uses a person’s information without their consent or knowledge to open an new account, file taxes or apply for benefits — was experienced by 37%.
Identity theft grew by 42% from 2019 to 2020, primarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the study states. And Aite estimates that losses from this form of fraud will grow to $635.4 billion by 2023.
This could hurt digital sales because victims will be unable to shop online during recovery, and may be wary of doing so afterwards.
Often, these frauds are perpetrated via email, adding another threat within companies and an added layer of distrust for the channel. This makes it critical that brands employ (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance) and other email security tools.
The study warns that as cases are investigated, it is "vitally important that the investigator not rely on contact information provided by the applicant/fraudster, whether this be a telephone number, address, or email address; correct contact data must be used to communicate with the true consumer who has been victimized."