One-Third of Consumers Were Notified Their Data Was Breached
Survey by Munich Re’s HSB Also Finds One in Five are Victims of Identity Theft
About one-third of U.S. consumers (34 percent) have been notified that their data has been breached, according to a survey released today by The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company (HSB), part of Munich Re, and one in five have been the victim of identity theft.
The nationwide poll, conducted for HSB by Zogby Analytics, reflects the growing risks for consumers as more of their personally identifying information is stored online. Almost half of those who had received a breach notification said they had been informed within the past 12 months.
“Data breaches continue to expose millions of Americans to identity theft and fraud,” said Timothy Zeilman, vice president and counsel for HSB, a leading provider of cyber insurance and services. “On the positive side, forty-eight states now require that affected individuals be notified and more consumers are taking advantage of credit monitoring and identity restoration services offered by businesses and insurers.”
Almost two-thirds (62 percent) of individuals whose personal information had been breached were offered credit monitoring or restoration services and 41 percent took advantage of those benefits.
The HSB consumer survey also showed that 18 percent of total respondents had been the victim of identity theft and a third had become aware of situation within the previous 12 months.
Asked when they discovered their identity had been stolen, 38 percent said when they applied for credit, were notified of a fraudulent tax filing, were named in a collection agency action over a debt, or some other financial or legal transaction.
Another 37 percent found out when they received a data breach notification; 20 percent spotted suspicious activity on their credit report, and four percent were notified by law enforcement.
Many victims (38 percent) didn’t know how their identity was stolen. Twenty-six percent said it was stolen online; 23 percent said it was breached from a bank, retailer, or other institution; eight percent through the loss or theft of a wallet, purse, laptop or smartphone, and five percent said a friend or family member.
Note for the editorial staff
Survey Methodology - Zogby Analytics was commissioned by Hartford Steam Boiler to conduct an online survey of 1,551 adults in the United States. Based on a confidence interval of 95 percent, the margin for error was plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, meaning all other things being equal, the identical survey repeated will have results within the margin of error 95 times out of 100.
Hartford Steam Boiler (HSB), a member of Munich Re’s Risk Solutions family since 2009, is a leading specialty insurer providing equipment breakdown, other specialty coverages, inspection services and engineering-based risk management that set the standard for excellence worldwide. We focus on clients and partner with them to craft inventive insurance and service solutions to cover existing and emerging risks posed by technological change. Today, as throughout our 150 year history, our mission is to use our engineering knowledge and insights to help clients prevent loss, advance sustainable use of energy resources and build deeper relationships that benefit business, industry, public institutions and consumers. HSB holds A.M. Best Company’s highest financial rating, A++ (Superior). For more information, visit www.hsb.com and connect on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
Munich Re stands for exceptional solution-based expertise, consistent risk management, financial stability and client proximity. This is how Munich Re creates value for clients, shareholders and staff. In the financial year 2017, the Group – which combines primary insurance and reinsurance under one roof – achieved a profit of €0.4bn. It operates in all lines of insurance, with over 42,000 employees throughout the world. With premium income of around €32bn from reinsurance alone, it is one of the world’s leading reinsurers. Especially when clients require solutions for complex risks, Munich Re is a much sought-after risk carrier. Its primary insurance operations are concentrated mainly in ERGO, one of the leading insurance groups in Germany and Europe. ERGO is represented in over 30 countries worldwide and offers a comprehensive range of insurances, provision products and services. In 2017, ERGO posted premium income of €17.5bn. Munich Re’s global investments (excluding insurance-related investments) amounting to €218bn are managed by MEAG, which also makes its competence available to private and institutional investors outside the Group.
Zogby Analytics is an international research firm, providing clients with information and knowledge critical for making informed strategic decisions since 1984. The firm conducts multi-phased opinion research with state-of-the-art opinion research capabilities and objective analysis and consultation for banking and financial services institutions, insurance companies, hospitals and medical centers, retailers and developers, religious institutions, cultural organizations, colleges and universities, IT companies and federal agencies.
Hartford, Connecticut, March 22nd, 2018
The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company
One State Street
P.O. Box 5024
Hartford, Connecticut 06102-5024