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Infographic: Identity theft takes an expensive, emotional toll

Summary

Imagine the populations of Illinois and Oklahoma all falling victim to identity theft, and you’ll have an idea of this crime’s annual scope.

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Imagine the populations of Illinois and Oklahoma all falling victim to identity theft, and you’ll have an idea of this crime’s annual scope. Nearly 17 million people became victims of identity theft in 2012, and the thieves made off with $24.7 billion, according to “Victims of Identity Theft, 2012,” a report from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics.

Yet along with those large numbers are some smaller, but equally important ones: The amount thieves took out of each person’s pocket, for example, and the amount of time robbed from victims’ days. The infographic below explores some of the more personal costs of identity theft, based on the findings of the BJS report.

The report, released in December 2013, used findings from the National Crime Victimization Survey, which collected data between January and June 2012 from those who experienced one or more of the following in the year preceding their interview: unauthorized use or attempted use of an existing account, unauthorized use or attempted use of personal information to open a new account, or misuse of personal information for a fraudulent purpose.

Cost of identity theft
See related:Have I fallen prey to identity theft?, More infographics

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