Medical identity theft affects different states at different rates: 3 things to know

While the overall rate of medical identity theft is growing in the U.S., the crime is growing at different rates in different states and regions of the country, according to part one of a three-part report published by The World Privacy Forum.

"The Geography of Medical Identity Theft" was presented at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission Workshop on Information Injury Dec. 12. The report authors — Pam Dixon, executive director of the World Privacy Forum, and John Emerson, a web and data visualization consultant — analyzed data gathered by WPF to describe geographic and growth trends in medical identity theft.

Here are three report insights.

1. Populous states, like California, Florida, Texas and New York, often have high consumer complaint counts; though the report notes this may be the result of higher populations.

2. A cluster of southeastern states emerged as a regional hotspot for medical identity theft.

3. Trends of aggressive debt collection as the result of medical identity theft also emerged, including problems with debt collection documented one to three years in duration.

Click here to read the full report.

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