ICFE eNEWS #19-03 - January 25th 2019
Federal Shutdown is No Holiday for Identity Thieves
By Yan Ross, Director of Special Projects, ICFE
As the federal shutdown enters its second month without a
resolution in sight, the effects on consumers, businesses and
non-profits are being felt more directly. Not only are the
furloughed workers and their families affected, but the citizens
they normally serve are beginning to experience the lack of
support from these "non-essential" federal agencies.
Identity thieves, and other cyber criminals, on the other hand,
are taking advantage of the void in reporting, tracking,
compliance, and enforcement activities of agencies like the
Federal Trade Commission (FTC). As readers will know, the FTC is
the repository for identity theft reports and enforcement
against such modalities used by criminals as violations of the
Do Not Call list.
Nearly all professional advice on the
first steps to take in the event of discovering an identity
theft incident includes contacting the FTC to file an identity
theft report. In addition to filing a police report, the ability
to demonstrate prompt action by the affected party may help
support insurance claims and other remedies to restore the
integrity of the person's identity.
At the time of this
writing, the FTC's reporting web site shows a shutdown message:
"Due to the government shutdown, we are unable to offer this
website service at this time. We will resume normal operations
when the government is funded."
On the prevention and
risk management side, consumers and businesses are advised to
undertake a current review of all employee training and software
updates. Even though this should be normal practice, the lack of
federal government support emphasizes the need for up-to-date
awareness of scams and social engineering, as well as
cyber-attacks, by would-be identity thieves.
of how long the federal shutdown continues, the best course in
the private sector is to stay the course on identity theft and
cybersecurity risk management.
For additional resources
on specific ways to address this challenge, ICFE directs your
attention to the Certified Identity Theft Risk Management
Specialist® (CITRMS®) XV course and the CITRMS® Textbook and
Desk Reference, available online.
Ross is ICFE's Director of Special Projects, and the author of the
Certified Identity Theft Risk Management Specialist ® XV CITRMS®
course. As an accredited educator for over 20 years, he has addressed
Identity Theft Risk Assessment and management for consumers, organizations
holding personally identifiable information, and professionals who
work with individuals and organizations who are at risk of falling
victim to identity thieves.
The ICFE's Certified Identity
Theft Risk Management Specialist ® XV CITRMS® course is now available
both in printed format and online.
The Textbook and Desk
Reference edition of the course book is also available online. Bulk
pricing and discounts for veterans and students available. Inquire
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Paul S. Richard
President - Executive Director
Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE)
About the ICFE:
The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) was founded in 1982 by
the late Loren Dunton (creator of the Certified Financial Planner (CFP)
designation and founder of the College for Financial Planning in Denver, CO.)
The ICFE is dedicated to helping consumers of all ages to improve their spending
practices, increase savings and use credit more wisely.
The ICFE is an
award winning, nonprofit, consumer education organization that has helped
millions of people through its financial continuing education courses programs
and resources. In addition to eight Certification courses covering identity
theft, credit files, credit repair and credit scoring, among others, it also
publishes the Do-It-Yourself Credit File correction Guide, which is updated
annually. The ICFE has distributed over one million Credit/Debit Card Warning
Labels and Credit/Debit Card Sleeves world wide.
The ICFE is a partner
with the national Jump$tart Coalition for Financial Literacy and the California
Jump$tart chapter. The ICFE staff is also active with San Diego Saves and
Military Saves, both offshoots of America Saves.
The ICFE is also an
on-line help for consumers who spend too much. ICFE's spending help was featured
in PARADE Magazine in the Intelligence Report section. The money helps and tips
are from the ICFE's Money Instruction Book, our course in personal finance.
The ICFE helps consumers and students with mending spending, learning about
the proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and
implement a spending-plan and also how to access financial education courses and
how to teach children about money. Other ICFE services include: Ask Mr. G
library, a free eNews service, and an online resource center for students,
parents and educators, plus financial education learning tools in the ICFE Book