Data Brokers Open the Door for Identity Theft


Massive amounts of data are constantly being generated about consumers and everything they do online. Data brokers are compiling information and selling it without fully verifying or authenticating the data. Which in turn, pulls incorrect results for many consumers. Data brokers sell information to retailers and marketers, generally, for advertising and market research purposes. But why are these retailers paying big bucks for information that isnt accurate?

Acxiom, one of the countrys largest data brokers, recently revealed a website called AboutTheData.com. This website allows consumers to view what information is in Acxioms database and verify if its accurate or not. Acxiom claims to have a massive database that holds information on 190 million consumers. However, much of the information within the database is incorrect, including information on education level, ethnicity and income level. There is a potential opportunity for fraud in this website that threatens consumers who are not aware of it. If an identity thief or fraudster knows your basic information such as name, address, email address, and last four of SSN, they are able to access your information and correct it without any regulation.

When trying this website out, the majority of EVS employees saw many flaws in their results. Information such as age, birth date, martial status, children, estimate household income and numerous household interests were incorrect. There should be a process for retrieving, correcting and submitting this information that is safe and secure for all consumers and includes a method of identity verification and authentication before updates to personal information are confirmed.

 

[Contributed by EVS Marketing]