Coinciding with the launch of National Identity Fraud Prevention Week, life assistance company CPP today unveils its weapon in the fight against Identity Fraud; Identity Protection Software.
This follows the significant growth in account takeover fraud throughout the UK (1).
CPP lead the UK identity Protection market with over 1million existing customers benefiting from the insurance, caseworker, credit report monitoring and internet patrol services in Identity Protection Alert.
The latest feature works by providing an extra layer of software security, which scans, cleans and monitors PCs for criminal activity as well as locking down web browsers when banking or shopping online to prevent criminals from using malicious software to steal bank account details, passwords and other sensitive information. This can be used either alongside or instead of existing PC protection software.
The latest version of IPA has been launched with a major high street bank and retails at £79.99 for an annual policy which also includes insurance, access to credit reports and a comprehensive caseworker service.
Identity Protection Software has been designed for customers who are concerned about fraudsters accessing their online accounts via phishing e-mails, viruses, key loggers and unsecure websites. Between 2007 and 2008 account takeover increased by 207% (2) and losses from online bank fraud rose 132% to £52.5m (3).
Once downloaded, IPA's new identity protection software, powered by Prevx, works by providing a security summary before removing any malicious software. Real-time updates means customers are always protected against the latest online threat. The software also installs a secure browser to prevent other applications viewing or extracting sensitive information that customers may enter online, such as passwords, login details, payment details and other personal information.
In addition, IPA constantly checks if unsecure websites and public databases hold information about policyholders and quantifies the level of risk. Customers are immediately made aware if their banks details are being ng traded on illegal black-market trading sites. Customers' credit reports are also constantly monitored and SMS and e-mail alerts inform them if there are any significant changes to their credit status indicating possible application fraud.
Restoring someone's identity can be stressful and time-consuming. According to CIFAS in cases where a 'total hijack' has occurred, perhaps involving 20-30 different organisations, it can take up to 200 hours of work for an identity to be restored. IPA provides a dedicated fraud expert to investigate and resolve cases, taking away the stress and hassle from victims. In the event of fraud where a customer's bank account is frozen, IPA will also supply victims with emergency funds.
Michael Lynch, product manager and identity theft expert at CPP, said: "We're delighted to announce the release of our upgraded identity protection service which will help protect customers from the latest online threats and account takeover.
"At CPP we are constantly looking to improve our products to ensure we continue to provide the most comprehensive protection and expert resolution services. We are pleased a major bank is selling the latest version of IPA and we are currently looking at extending the new features to the rest of our business partner base."
Key benefits of IPA V3
o £60,000 insurance cover to cover lost earnings, legal expenses or communication costs
o £1,500 immediate money transfer for emergency transactions to cover living expenses
o Dedicated fraud expert case worker
o Home investigation service
o Instant access to credit reports and alerts
o PC protection software
o Online identity monitoring and alerts
o £200 to cover document replacement and document registration so that all personal details are safely stored
o National fraud database registration - to ensure that there are extra precautions in place before people could take out credit in your name
o Confidential advice line
1. Account takeover is when a fraudster impersonates a genuine account holder to transfer founds out of an existing account and apply for new credit
2. Data from CIFAS, the UK's Fraud Prevention Service, January 2009
3. Data from APACS, the UK Payment Association, March 2009
4. According to GetSafeOnline, February 2009