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Hollard has formed a partnership with Identity Guard to fight Business ID thieves

28 April 2015 Warwick Goldie, Hollard

Identity thieves are turning to businesses for more lucrative pickings.

Identity thieves claim a new victim every two seconds worldwide making it the number one fraud complaint and it is delivering growing and extreme dangers to a business’ financial stability, goodwill and reputation – motivating Hollard Broker Markets to embed Business Identity Theft insurance into all liability policies at no additional premium.

This protection will pay up to R500 000 for specialists to repair identity data vulnerabilities as well as restore damage to a company’s image and reputation.

“Although, the majority of identity thieves currently exploit individuals – and there is more public awareness in that arena - businesses are increasingly being targeted as thieves become more aware that stealing identifying data from businesses can be much more lucrative and provide a great diversity of fraudulent opportunities and strategies,” says Warwick Goldie, Head of Hollard Specialist Liabilities within Hollard Broker Markets.

How wide does it go?

“As an example of identity theft seen recently in documentary TV programs, trucks are being branded to convince suppliers to freely give their valuable loads of agricultural produce to imposters to ride away without question,” explains Goldie.

However, identity thieves target businesses of all kinds including banks, insurers, utilities companies, manufacturers, retailers, employment screeners and government agencies. An example of this is the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC). In this case the official government logo was used on fake e-mails and letters asking recipients for their bank account information, credit card details and other personal information so that a sum of money they owed could be paid. In this scam 761 South Africans were swindled as identified by the FIC.

Goldie explains that thieves use, among other official verifications, the business name, logos and banking records to apply for loans or buy goods from suppliers in that company’s name. “They can also establish a temporary office or retail space; open fake accounts in a company’s name; manipulate business or credit records; order merchandise or services with stolen credit card information or bogus account details. Various scams and phishing attacks are also designed to be sent to a company’s customer base to obtain confidential information. There is also the no-tech approach which involves rummaging through trash for revealing discarded documents or expired passports, ID cards or driver’s licences of directors.

“The bottom line is that the reputations and stability of South African businesses are under attack from anywhere in the world. Should such a damaging data theft take place, who pays to repair the intangible damage and the return of a company’s good name and stability?

“Hollard has formed a partnership with Identity Guard, leaders in this field, whose Specialist Team will man a dedicated call centre which will assign a consultant who will guide the process, identify the impersonating data, assist with a police report and do what is necessary to restore security of the company’s data and reputation,” says Goldie.

 

 

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