Medical Identity Theft in the United States

in Transnational Crime

Medical identity theft in the United States caused victims to lose up to $12 Billion in 2012, according to security professionals and identity theft prevention specialists.

1.84 million people in the United States fell victim to medical id theft in 2012, with nearly 313,000 cases being reported. Security experts believe that many cases are not reported as family members use the identity of another in order to get medical benefits.

On the black market, id thieves sell the identity kits of a person for $1,200 to $1,300 for the purpose of obtaining health insurance, with a extra charge for rush orders in emergencies.

15 percent of the theft victims reported a misdiagnosis due to their identity being stolen. 14 percent had a delay in medical treatment, 13 percent received an inaccurate treatment, and 11 percent had the wrong prescription drugs given to them.

Source:  Kelly Jackson Higgins, “Medical ID Theft Spreads,” Dark Reading, September 12, 2013.

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