The UK government has launched a Web site offering advice on protecting against identity theft, which it says costs the country £1.3bn per year.
The site - www.identity-theft.org.uk - was produced by the Identity Fraud Steering Committee, a cross public-private sector programme which includes representatives of the Association for Payment Clearing Services (Apacs), Association of Chief Police Officers and the British Bankers Association.
Commenting on the site, Paul Marsh, director, card services, Apacs, says: "This site is a 'one-stop shop', providing consumer advice on how to protect your identity and what to do if you become a victim of identity fraud."
Advice is provided for consumers on the safe storage of cards and documents and the disposing of bills, receipts and statements.
Home Office Minister Des Browne says: "Multiple or false identities are used in more than a third of terrorist related activity and in organised crime and money laundering."
Separately, President Bush is set to sign a bill today designed to combat crimes involving ID theft such as phishing. The Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act adds two years to prison sentences for anybody convicted of using stolen credit cards other personal financial data to commit crime. Those convicted of using stolen data to commit crimes associated with terrorism would get an extra five years.