Infographic: are you losing your identity?
Infographic: are you losing your identity?

Identity fraud is a crime that is affecting millions of people around the world, with personal details being shared by fraudsters online.

Various password-collecting websites, who publish passwords from breaches that have happened around the web, are estimating that in 2016 alone nearly 250 million people from around the world have had their login details stolen and published on the web.

Identity fraud is what happens after a criminal has stolen someone's identity using information found in these breaches, and goes on to open a new bank account or accessing existing credit card accounts.

Examining some figures from an Equifax survey and from Cifas, a fraud prevention organisation, Equifax wanted to look at the wider picture, how identity theft happens and what people can prevent it from happening.

Sandra Peaston, assistant director, insight at Cifas said: “Anyone can be a victim of fraud and we know that from a victim's perspective, fraud is not just about the money. The feeling of violation and a loss of trust from scams and identity fraud can be just as serious as the financial impact. We want to work with partners to do more to educate people about how to protect themselves and empower them to feel confident enough to report scams when they happen and continue their daily lives without fear of falling victim again.