Hull MP welcomes National Identity Fraud Prevention Week

Hull North MP Diana Johnson today urged her local constituents not to hand their identity over on a plate to fraudsters.

The calls come as Diana Johnson signed a Parliamentary Early Day Motion (EDM) in support of National Identity Fraud Prevention week, being held from 16 to 22 October 2006.

The week aims to raise awareness of the dangers of identity fraud and inform the public and businesses on the steps they could and should be taking to protect themselves from identity fraud.

This awareness drive has been put in place by an expert group of public and private sector partners, including the regional police forces, Crimestoppers, The Information and Passport Service, CIFAS The UK's Fraud Prevention Service, Fellowes, the Federation of Small Businesses, Callcredit, Equifax and Experian.

According to Which? 1 in 4 people have been affected by identity fraud, and at the beginning of the year the Home Office estimated the cost of identity fraud to the economy at £1.7 billion.

New research commissioned for the week has revealed that nearly every household surveyed in a controlled bin-raiding exercise had thrown out sensitive materials with their household rubbish and 48% had thrown away everything a fraudster needs to steal a person's identity.

Diana Johnson MP said: "Too many people put themselves at risk from this growing problem. Victims of identity theft face a miserable time getting their identity back, with many hours spent dealing with the consequences.

"My message is simple: take note of the police advice and ensure that you don't hand your identity on a plate to fraudsters.

"By introducing the national ID card scheme, the Government is doing its bit to fight ID fraud, but every citizen must play their part too. I urge everybody in Hull North to wise up to identity theft before it is too late."