Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present and explain the identity theft cycle. The identity theft cycle explains how a perpetrator goes through various stages of confidence and experimentation when stealing an individual's identity. Design/methodology/approach – The paper takes a conceptual approach by first describing identity theft in detail and then discussing the seriousness of identity theft for consumers today. The paper then presents and explains the identity theft cycle in greater detail including the stages of discovery, action, and trial. Findings – The paper provides evidence to suggest that if identity theft is detected early, consumers can protect themselves from the vast and difficult consequences of identity theft. Originality/value – This paper fulfills an important area of research by providing basic information about the nature of identity theft. This paper also discusses the various ways that perpetrators steal consumers' information, as well as teaches consumers how to proactively protect themselves from identity theft.
Journal of Financial Crime – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 11, 2011
Keywords: Fraud; Theft; Consumer fraud; Identity theft; The identity theft cycle
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