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The recent case of a couple who were awarded £55,000 after their bank disclosed information over the phone to fraudsters, further highlights the risks associated with identity fraud.

The bank’s actions enabled the thieves to pose as bank staff and defraud the couple of £130,000. The fine for Barclays reveals not only the extent to which fraudsters will go to steal an identity, but also how even the largest financial businesses can be fooled.

ID fraud involves individuals opening bank accounts, obtaining credit cards and committing fraud in other people’s names, and the incidents are continuing to rise. According to the Cifas (fraud prevention agency) Fraudscape 2016 report, out of 320,900 frauds recorded in 2015, 53% were identity fraud. In 2015, ID fraud rose by nearly 50% from 2014 [1].

In 2013, Arc Legal ran its own ID fraud survey of 2000 UK adults with market research company YouGov and found high levels of concern about ID fraud. Over three quarters of respondents said they were either ‘very concerned’ or ‘fairly concerned’ about becoming a victim of identity fraud. The perception that cases were increasing was also high, as was the call for more information about identity fraud and how to avoid it.

When it comes to the role of insurance in supporting people impacted by ID fraud, our survey showed there was definite interest. When asked if they would be likely to buy an appropriately priced insurance product that would pay for any expenses, losses, and solicitors fees resulting from being a victim of identity fraud, nearly a quarter said that they would.

Arc Legal has been at the forefront of ID fraud protection legal expenses products for 10 years. Our cover is designed to remove the burden of dealing with the aftermath of ID theft, providing protection and access to experienced and trusted partners to help in three key areas:

  • Prevention – advice on data protection and regular reviews of the policyholder’s credit file, alerting them to a change in their credit profile.
  • Assistance – in the event of ID Fraud, providing immediate advice, protection registration with Cifas, liaison with creditors and other relevant organisations and dealing with any legal proceedings which may be issued, including representation at court if required.
  • Resolution – repairing the policyholder’s credit file and overturning any legal judgments. Providing an indemnity in respect of any expenses incurred, including incidental expenses.

The level and breadth of our ID theft service can be tailored ranging from a low acquisition cost helpline service to a fully insured credit monitoring product.

To find out more about our ID theft cover please contact your Account Manager.

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