IDology, a GBG company, today announced it has launched a free Senior Security Series of videos to help combat a COVID-19-related increase in fraud attempts directed toward people over 65, many of whom may not be as technically savvy as other consumers and now find themselves homebound in order to protect their health.
Recent survey data found there is a strong misconception among elderly consumers about the security of their personal information, with 81% of seniors not knowing or believing that their personal information, such as Social Security numbers and bank account information, is available for criminals to purchase on the dark web. Through the collection of informative, online how-to videos, IDology, a leader in providing identity verification solutions for businesses, will help equip seniors with the knowledge they need to engage with digital services online while avoiding falling prey to fraud.
“When our fraud team discovered shifts in our data indicating that fraudsters are taking advantage of COVID-19 fears and the subsequent rise in online activities to target senior citizens, we wanted to do something quickly to help,” said IDology COO Christina Luttrell. “Providing the senior community with immediate free resources to help them learn how to better protect themselves is our way of giving back while also combatting this specific area of fraud.”
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact daily life worldwide, consumer patterns are shifting away from in-person transactions toward digital experiences. This rise in e-commerce, along with the simultaneous distribution of federal stimulus checks and conducting of the 2020 census, has led to new opportunities for fraudsters to target seniors who may be opening up digital accounts or engaging in other online activities for the first time. Supporting this trend, IDology has observed a 209% increase in data suggesting that fraudsters are increasingly utilizing senior citizen identities to commit online fraud.
Seniors are already highly susceptible to online fraud, mobile fraud, and account takeovers. According to the latest IDology-administered online survey, taken from February through March of this year, 55% of senior citizens do not have or do not know if they have virus protection on their mobile devices.
While the spike in crime against senior citizens is deeply disturbing, steps can be taken to protect this vulnerable population during the global crisis, including changing passwords, enabling multi-factor authentication, opting out of preapproved credit card offers and undertaking relevant security training. For more details about IDology’s informative videos, visit the Senior Security Series.