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Publication Victims of Identity Theft, 2014

Erika Harrell, Ph.D., Bureau of Justice Statistics

September 27, 2015    NCJ 248991

Presents findings on the prevalence and nature of identity theft from the 2014 Identity Theft Supplement to the National Crime Victimization Survey. Identity theft is defined as the unauthorized use or attempted use of existing accounts, or the unauthorized use or attempted use of personal information, to open a new account or for other fraudulent purposes. The report details the number and percentage of persons age 16 or older who reported at least one incident of identity theft over the past year. It describes how the personal information was obtained, financial losses due to identity theft, victim reporting to credit bureaus and police, and the impact of identity theft on victims lives. The report includes a lifetime prevalence rate for identity theft and information on the preventive actions taken to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft. It also compares information from 2012 to 2014.


  • About 7% of persons age 16 or older were victims of identity theft in 2014, similar to findings in 2012.
  • The majority of identity theft victims (86%) experienced the fraudulent use of existing account information, such as credit card or bank account information.
  • The number of elderly victims of identity theft increased from 2.1 million in 2012 to 2.6 million in 2014.
  • About 14% of identity theft victims experienced out-of-pocket losses of $1 or more. Of these victims, about half suffered losses of less than $100.
  • Half of identity theft victims who were able to resolve any associated problems did so in a day or less.

Part of the Identity Theft Series

Press Release
Summary (PDF)
Full report (PDF 697KB)
ASCII file (41KB)
Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format)

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National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)

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