The term identity theft training does not refer to the education on how to commit an identity fraud in the context of this article but rather an education about how to manage identity theft risks. And, when we discuss identity theft risks, we have to determine who manages the risks and whose identity is that person planning to protect from theft.
For the purposes of this article, we refer to identity theft training as a way to learn about identity theft threats and related solutions. Normally, we don’t think about identity theft protection until we are hit with an awakening identity theft case. Nothing grabs our attention better than an incident which directly affects us, our families or businesses. This is why most people who rush to the Internet and sign up for the first identity theft protection advertising they see have experienced identity theft one way or another. Although identity theft is real and affects millions of people each year, fear is a big part of our decision making process including when deciding to purchase an identity theft service. Very few people take responsibility to learn about and plan ahead for addressing a personal risk and often most people prefer to transfer the risks to another person or company which makes sense sometimes such as when buying life insurance, however, ignoring identity theft training and deciding to just purchase an identity theft protection service without learning about what the service does, how it does it, or what its limitations are is not a wise decision. This is not to say that purchasing an identity theft protection service which facilitates and automates some of our efforts is a bad choice, but we have to think about what else we can do to make our identity theft protection efforts more effective because even all the identity theft protection services combined can not replace the importance of individual awareness and knowledge.
From an identity theft and privacy perspective, when people avoid taking responsibility for the protection of their information and think that identity theft will go away by just buying identity theft services, they actually increase their identity theft risks because they continue the same careless behavior by posting all kinds of personal information on the Internet and sharing as much information as possible. Little that they know, companies like Facebook see a huge opportunity to monetize their member information or they will go out of business. Also, when consumers become identity obese by sharing excessive amount of personal information about themselves with as many parties as possible, they rely on the third parties to protect the shared information and they forget that others will never care about their information as much as they care about it and if they are careless about their own information, why should others care.
This is why the Identity Diet program which is an identity theft training course for consumers recommends sharing less information and owning less online accounts. When personal information is excessively shared and exposed to theft and disclosure, it is too late to claim it back and we become dependent on the businesses and governments to protect our information.
As employees and consultants of companies concerned with identity theft, we refer to identity theft training as a way to learn about how to reduce the business risks including the risk of non-compliance with various identity theft and privacy regulations. The identity theft risks in certain organizations are extremely high and may result in losses from fraud or litigation and disclosure of personal information to unauthorized and unlimited number of people which is irreversible. Once personal information is disclosed to others, we can say good bye to our privacy and ability to protect the information.