Is It ID Theft Or Was The Bank Robbed?

from the which-one-seems-more-accurate dept

Via Clay Shirky, comes a very good point from Kevin Marks concerning claims of "identity theft," where he notes that identity theft is not actually an identity being stolen but is usually a bank/credit card company being robbed and passing off the blame for their own poor security on the victim. He point to a brilliant comedy routine by Mitchell and Webb that makes this all pretty clear:
"They took all the money? That sounds more like a bank robbery."
"No, no. If only. 'Cause we could take the hit. No, no. It was actually your identity that was stolen, primarily. It's a massive pisser for you."
"But, it's actually money that's been taken..."
"Yes"
"From you?"
"Kind of."
"I don't know what you want from me other than my commiserations."
"You see it was your identity. They said they were you!"
"And you believed them?"
"Yes, they stole your identity."
"Well, I don't know. I seem to still have my identity, whereas you seem to have lost several thousands of pounds. In light of that, I'm not sure why you think it was my identity that was stolen instead of your money."
The problem isn't "identity theft." It's bad security and verification processes by a financial institution.

Filed Under: identity theft, scams, security


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  1. icon
    Fiercedeity (profile), 26 Aug 2009 @ 10:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Except the banks job should be to verify IDENTITY, not simply that you have the right "keys". Even if someone stole someone else's credentials, the fact remains that the bank incorrectly IDENTIFIED the person and released funds (or whatever). However you spin it, the bank still shares responsibility for that specific incident.

    I'm not saying that users aren't responsible, they are. And there are a lot of stupid people out there. And they pay for it through the hell you have to go through to sort everything out (sometimes takes years). I think that's punishment enough for someone to learn from their mistake.

    The problem is that many banks don't take their own security seriously (at least when it comes to customer security). If the bank does EVERYTHING reasonably possible to ensure customer security, goes to every length possible to resolve reports of fraud, then at that point if a breach occurs I will say the bank is clear. However, most banks don't even come close to this. And as the backbone of the country's financial well being (maybe lol), they have a responsibility to be that secure.

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