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Publication Identity Theft, 2005

Katrina Baum, Ph.D., Bureau of Justice Statistics

November 1, 2007    NCJ 219411

Presents data from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) on identity theft victimization and its consequences. This report presents the first full year of data available after new questions about identity theft were added to the survey in July 2004. Identity theft is defined in the report as credit card thefts, thefts from existing accounts, misuse of personal information, and multiple types at the same time. Based on interviews with a nationally representative sample of 40,000 household residents, the report describes age, race, and ethnicity of the household head; household income and composition; and location of the household. Characteristics of the theft presented include economic loss, how the theft was discovered, whether misuse is ongoing, and problems experienced as a result of the identity theft.


  • About 1.6 million households experienced theft of existing accounts other than a credit card (such as a banking account), and 1.1 million households discovered misuse of personal information (such as social security number).
  • Ten percent of the households with incomes of $75,000 or higher experienced identity theft; that was about twice the percentage of households earning less than $50,000.
  • Across all types of identity theft, the average amount lost per household was $1,620.

Part of the Identity Theft Series

Full report (PDF 205K)
ASCII file (22K)
Spreadsheet (Zip format 9K)
To order paper version

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National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)

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