The issue of identity theft is a topic that has received a lot of news coverage of late, and rightly so, as it is an ever-increasing concern.
Generally speaking, the media seems to focus it’s attention on personal identity theft but did you realise that corporate id theft is also growing at an alarming rate?
WHAT IS CORPORATE IDENTITY THEFT?
Corporate identity theft is the act of gaining personal and/or financial information from a company in order to facilitate the assumption of their identity in order to profit financially from transactions or purchases.
Perhaps the most common form of identity theft comes in the form of phishing emails – designed to appear to be from a legitimate bank, etc, in order to gain access to unsuspecting recipient’s accounts.
Scammers are also targeting corporations directly in order to gain access to bank accounts, arrange illegal money transfers, destroy credit ratings and also, in some cases, to cause harm to the reputation of a business.
WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF CORPORATE IDENTITY THEFT?
Here in the UK, for a business that has not adequately protected itself, a corporate identity thief can change registrations at Companies House, even to the point of registering themselves as a director.
Once they have done this they can then open new bank and credit accounts and even have goods shipped to a new address that they have added to the file, thereby putting company credit ratings at risk.
Of course the financial implications of the above may well pale into insignificance when compared to the damage that may be done to a victim corporation’s reputation and image.