In 2007, the Community attitudes to privacy survey was conducted by the Wallis
Consulting Group for the Office of the Privacy Commissioner. Included in the
issues examined was a series of questions concerning awareness and experience of
identity fraud and theft (IFT). More than 1,500 respondents took part in the
latest survey, which showed increased levels of concern in the community over
the prevalence of IFT since the previous comparable survey conducted in 2004.
Nine percent of those surveyed said they had been a victim of IFT, while 17
percent said they knew a victim. Respondents aged 34-49 years were most likely
to have been a victim (12%), while those aged under 24 years were the least
likely (2%), but quite likely to know someone who had been a victim (19%).
Respondents with annual household incomes greater than $100,000 were most likely
both to have been a victim themselves (11%), and to have known a victim (21%),
with the likelihood of knowing a victim increasing with household income up to
$100,000. The report noted that the overall level of community concern regarding
IFT incidents was high, with the majority of respondents (60%) saying they were
concerned or very concerned. Almost one-half of respondents (45%) considered
that using the internet and online banking or purchasing were the most likely
ways in which IFT would occur.
Identity fraud and theft in Australia by age and income, 2007 (percent)
Source: Wallis Consulting Group (2007)