Our Wired World

2019’s States Most Vulnerable to Identity Theft & Fraud

How ‘bug data breeches’ are compromising our personal information

New research from the consumer credit-monitoring site wallethub.com. Reprinted with permission. Read more here.

With businesses such as WhatsApp, Quest Diagnostics, Microsoft, ASUS and Capital One experiencing data breaches this year, the free credit-monitoring website WalletHub today released its report on 2019’s States Most Vulnerable to Identity Theft & Fraud as well as accompanying videos.

In recent years, many Americans’ personal information has become compromised by big data breaches. In 2019 alone, prominent companies like WhatsApp, Quest Diagnostics, Microsoft, ASUS and Capital One have fallen victim to cybercriminals. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center’s most recent Data Breach Report, between January 1, 2005 and August 31, 2019, there have been 10,818 breaches. That accounts for over 1.6 billion records compromised.

The federal government and various businesses in recent years have taken more aggressive measures to build up our defenses. One big concern is not just hacking on the individual level, but cyberattacks by foreign governments to gain leverage. The United States recently signed a new cybersecurity agreement at the U.N., which condemns cyberattacks on civilian targets. Despite this, criminal strategies continue to evolve and grow in sophistication, keeping consumers vulnerable to identity theft and fraud.

Some Americans Are More Suscptible

But some Americans are more susceptible than others to such crimes. In order to determine who is most likely to be exposed to and affected by identity theft and fraud, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 15 key metrics. Our data set ranges from identity-theft complaints per capita to average loss amount due to fraud. Read on for our findings, tips for protecting your personal information and a full description of our methodology.

To determine where Americans are most susceptible to such crimes, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 15 key metrics. The data set ranges from identity-theft complaints per capita to average loss amount due to fraud.

In addition, WalletHub offers an Identity Theft Guide and free credit monitoring to help consumers handle or prevent the damaging effects of cybercrimes.

Most Vulnerable StatesLeast Vulnerable States
1District of Columbia42Missouri
2California43Maine
3Nevada44Arkansas
4New Hampshire45Hawaii
5South Carolina46Kansas
6Delaware47Oklahoma
7Louisiana48West Virginia
8Texas49Vermont
9New York50Wyoming
10Florida51Kentucky

Key Stats

Vermont has the fewest identity-theft complaints (per 100,000 residents), 51, which is 4.5 times fewer than in the Georgia, the most at 229.

North Dakota has the lowest average loss amount due to online identity theft, $1,214, which is 87.2 times lower than in Minnesota, the highest at $105,919.

North Dakota has the fewest fraud complaints (per 100,000 residents), 337, which is 3.5 times fewer than in the District of Columbia, the most at 1,179.

criminal strategies continue to evolve and grow in sophistication, keeping consumers vulnerable to identity theft and fraud...

Illinois, Michigan, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Wisconsin have the lowest median loss amount due to fraud, $300, which is 1.6 times lower than in North Dakota, the highest at $490.

To view the full report and your state or the District’s rank, please visit here.