Sprint, AT&T, BofA Faves of Identity Thieves

Half of all complaints in 2006 months came from 25 companies
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 29, 2008 5:41 PM CST
Sprint, AT&T, BofA Faves of Identity Thieves
A man walks past a Sprint store in Santa Monica, Calif.,Thursday, Feb. 28, 2008. Sprint Nextel Corp. swung to a fourth-quarter loss of $29.5 billion Thursday as it wrote down most of the remaining value of its 2005 purchase of Nextel Communications Inc. and continued to lose customers to competitors....   (Associated Press)

Bank of America led as a target for identity thieves in a 2006 sample of FTC complaints, followed closely by AT&T and Sprint. The survey by Berkeley researchers found that half of all complaints involved 25 organizations, mainly banks and telecom companies, reports PC World. There were 88,000 offenses voluntarily reported over three months’ time.

8% of all new account fraud involved phone companies, a figure the lead researcher found “really astounding”; the process usually involves starting accounts with real social security numbers and phony names—and then building a credit history to exploit. And you thought those pre-approved credit card applications were merely annoying: Banks that send you mail are prime targets for identity theft. (More identity theft stories.)

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