Overview

This report explores the risk that identity fraud scams have on U.S. adults aged 50+.  As criminals pursue multiple targets in their quest to steal personally identifiable information, there is a complete lack of regard for the person who loses his or her identity. There is no code of ethics that draws a line of acceptable behavior that cannot be crossed. This latest exploration of identity fraud, sponsored by AARP, will draw parallels between the actions of criminals and the overall effect those actions can have on victims of identity fraud and identify fraud scams.

Javelin Strategy & Research maintains complete independence in its data collection, findings, and analysis.

Though scams may vary across generations, all groups are prime targets for criminals. The impact of identity fraud scams on victims affects their quality of life, financially and emotionally. Those who experience scams are often reluctant to report the crimes out of shame that makes them feel incapable of handling their personal business affairs. The truth of the matter is that any person of any age can be ensnared by identity fraud and identity fraud scams. U.S. adults aged 50+ are in some ways faring better than other generations, due in part to their vigilance and cautious examination of contact with persons unknown to them. The stakes for U.S. adults aged 50+ are higher than for other age groups, however, as the average losses in an identity fraud scam tend to be higher for those who have accumulated more wealth and physical assets during their lifetime.

Being able to identify criminal red flags is a positive step toward reducing the incidence of identity fraud. Equal importance should be placed on the role provided by financial service providers to offer education and problem resolution as lifelines to identity fraud victims.


Methodology

This report, sponsored by AARP, focuses on how U.S. adults aged 50+ are affected by identity fraud and identity fraud scams. This report was adapted from the 2021 Identity Fraud Study, published by Javelin Strategy & Research in March 2021. Javelin Strategy & Research maintains complete independence in its data collection, findings, and analysis.