According to a recent report, there were 12.6 million victims of identity fraud in 2012. And increasingly, criminals are taking advantage of the poor security measures smartphone and tablet owners use to gain access to important personal information. Many users keep banking information on their phones or check their bank accounts via public Wi-Fi. And many people leave their phones unattended at their office or in their parked cars.
A federal grand jury has indicted seven people for identity theft. U.S. Attorney Carter Stewart says six of them are citizens of Zimbabwe who lived in the Cincinnati area at one time. He says they used the stolen identities to obtain millions in fraudulent income tax returns:
"The scheme was so efficient and well planned that they often had the refunds in hand before the actual taxpayers even filed their legitimate tax returns."