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Dramatic rise in identity theft

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 20 Jul 2009, 11:24

Published: 20 Jul 2009 11:24 GMT+02:00

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In the first six months of 2009 the number of identities frozen as a result of identity theft amounted to 1,439, a 79 percent increase on the corresponding period of 2006, figures from Swedish credit rating agency Soliditet.

"The development is of great concern. The trend clearly points to an increase. Over the past year alone reports of fraud as a result of identity theft have increased by 30 percent," said Krister Jörlén, Soliditet CEO, in a company press release.

The statistics show those that have applied to have their personal data frozen at Soliditet after having been subjected to fraud.

A common scenario is that identities are hijacked and used to execute credit card transactions.

The figures indicate significant regional variations with Malmö experiencing an increase of a 129 percent on 2006, Gothenburg up 83 percent and Stockholm by 72 percent.

But with by far the greatest increase is the eastern Sweden town of Eskilstuna with an increase of 429 percent from the second quarter 2006.

The figures also indicate significant differences across the generations.

According to the statistics, of those reporting the theft of their identity 28 percent were between 30 and 39-years-old, 24 percent were 40-49-years-old and 16 percent were 20-29-years-old.

Story continues below…

"The differences between the various groups is due to new lifestyles and habits. Young people go out more and do not always have a check on their identification documents," Krister Jörlén explains.

Jörlén explained that the loss of identification documents does not only cause practical problems but can also be mentally straining.

"My advice is to always have a check on your identification documents. If you suspect that someone has hijacked your personal details then you should contact the police immediately."

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

15:36 July 20, 2009 by refugee
pervention is better than cure ........ so take care of those Arbes than sacring at the time when you encounter black people ...They are mostly both stupied and thivies .
16:16 July 20, 2009 by crusader
There is a great blog on identity theft which has several books by Michael McCoy. This site seems to be focused on helping the consumer and the business a like.

18:16 July 20, 2009 by Mb 65
The first thing i did when i moved to Sweden was to get a post box with a lock on it. When the post boxes are so far from one's house it is stupid not to have a locked one. I am also amazed at how many people leave there purses and wallets on the cafe table when they go and collect their food.
19:18 July 20, 2009 by bolababu
@Refugee, ..i know i should not dignify your comment with a response but i can't just let this one pass.

Everyone in Sweden knows that the real thieves here are Arabs/middle-easterners, ..they never want to pay for anything no matter how much they want it, they just want to take it. I settled a fight recently between an iraqi and a newspaper distributor with GP whom he had stolen newspapers from everyday, almost costing him his job. You live in other people's country and cannot even behave yourselves or treat your hosts with respect and you have the courage to mention "black people"? ..all the black people I know are hard-workers, except for the Somalis who are also your cousins. You should get an education and get a job 'cos if you had a life, you won't have time to come here and talk crap. I wonder why the Swedes are so afraid of you rag-heads.
19:48 July 20, 2009 by Lurkinshire
I really, really hope that the comments by refugee and bolababu are just trolls and I am feeding the trolls....

I really hope so, otherwise I am very sorry that both of you hold such bigoted views - its a shame that the big bad foreigner is still be held up as the source of all the worlds ills.

Could it be that the identity theft being perpatrated is actually being done by clean, blue eyed, blond Svensson children (who have worked out just what a bountiful source of information Eniro is).... could be, this article tells us nothing about who commits these crimes - so wouldn't it be better to reseve judgement until we have so more information?

Freedom of speech is okay - insulting and derogartory language is not!
23:42 July 20, 2009 by Kaethar
"The figures also indicate significant differences across the generations."

More information on this would be interesting.

And to the person who's blaming Arabs and Somalis you clearly need to catch up on your statistics. White collar crimes of this kind are more likely to be carried out by criminal gangs - often people with Yugoslav or eastern European origin or ethnic Swedes.
01:06 July 21, 2009 by Dafios
Y shuold u by username (refugee) talk so rubish? all blacks are not the same just mind ur speach and speak as educated being, we black dont steal we were most train by hard working so we work hard to gain for living so dont mix the blacks with the arab, not even all the arabs are as u are saying some europiens are worse.
01:47 July 21, 2009 by Tutu
I could not agree more with kaethar. there are thieves in every culture be it arabs blacks and of course the indegenious swedish. I expected the first comment to have been removed by now becuase the fraud has nothing to do with race. I wish a statistics of the races involved in the fraud was revealed.
08:39 July 21, 2009 by Weekend_warrior
Well this is just a slap in my face. Just last week in one of the financial blogs I frequent, we were discussing a post about a paper of two Carnigie Mellon Professors who figured out how to successfully guess Social Security Numbers. This naturally brought up the risk of identity theft.

I mentioned how easy it was in Sweden to get someones number (their bday) followed by the last 4 digits, one being for a persons sex (0-4male for example) and another being one's location. Or something to that effect. And with sites like Eniro and Hitta....I said either Sweden just doesn't have identity theft problems or nobody talks about it...

well here it is. With Malmö being the hardest hit of the major cities, as well as highest with immigrants, it does not surprise me people put two and two together.

I would say, most likely Russian gangs, or to that effect. And this recession doesn't help either. Sounds me like lifelock.com could be a profitable business here in Sweden.
09:29 July 21, 2009 by kmbr
And this recession doesn't help either

I don't know if identity thieves were productive members of society pre-recession.

Nor will they be in the next boom.
10:10 July 21, 2009 by Harding00
Why do people always bring race into this? It is astonishing how many comments revolve around race (and religion, for that matter). Can't we have a more civilized, less racist group of people commenting on these articles. Also, how many of you even live in Sweden right now?
10:23 July 21, 2009 by ameribrit
For Weekend warrior. Just to note that Eskilstuna is the hardest hit not Malmo.

I have said for a while now that Sweden is a thieves paradise. Too many people are still believing their own propaganda about how no Swede would ever take advantage of or steal from another.

Makes you wonder though, how people can so easily steal someones identity in a country where so many of us imports can not even establish our own identity with all the original documents.

And, Yes I do live in Sweden.
10:25 July 21, 2009 by ameribrit
Weekend Warrior. I guess you did say "Major cities" so, my bad.
11:04 July 21, 2009 by Bender B Rodriquez
If you have access to someones mailbox you can order credit cards which you use for internet purchases; that's the most common form of identity theft.
11:04 July 21, 2009 by Weekend_warrior
Yes, I too live in Sweden.

Yea I said major cities, only because I am not really aware of the demographics, population, or economy of Eskiltuna.

When I said this recession doesn't help either, I was referring to its correlation with the increase in ID theft. Not unlike common burglary.

Back in the states I am pretty good at doing my due diligence, pulling my credit report every 6 months, etc... Been kinda lazy in that department over here. Guess I should take a peak
20:38 July 24, 2009 by Taketh
Some people are just plain ignorant. Refugee and bolababu are clear examples. This article is about fraud and identity theft.....where in the world did race come in,.......

Fraudsters have no race or gender......a criminal is a criminal.....let's not bring race into this issue....

Stereotyping is a disease in the western world......

Good article by the way,,,,,, Bravo!
20:53 July 24, 2009 by stan dan deliver
we got burgled by bosnian slags 2 years ago..the c++++ had lived here for 5 years.never ever had a job...the ring leader had done 10 previous inbrotts...they all walked free from court with just a 5000sek fine.i'de bet 90% of all crime comited here is by foriegners

send the bastards home..they aint welcome here
21:34 July 24, 2009 by 7/1
[ You should get an education and get a job 'cos if you had a life, you won't have time to come here and talk crap.

E7em . excuse me boss ... do you mean that you also do not have an education and you are without a job and no life ... because if you allow me you are here also here in the discuss writing and reading ... eller hur ? =)
22:02 July 24, 2009 by stan dan deliver
lol u muppet...full time work, too much work in fact.i'm booked untill january with work..built a new house, very small morgage on it ..live like a king...i'm just a working class lad done good u prick
22:03 July 24, 2009 by Stüpid
So, what if they do not work? They know the secret how to make many children.

They think they are white and can descriminate black. They think they are native swedes. Actually their number is too much. They keep growing. They keep arguing with people and think it's their right to acheive anything. I really hate them.
22:07 July 24, 2009 by stan dan deliver
have no problem with them if they get jobs and play the game.

stealing all my wordly possesions including all my wifes jewelry is not playing the game...

i know who they are and where they live...
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