Stop, Identity Thief!

Which would concern you the most: the theft of your laptop, your wallet/purse or your Social Security number? In polling for ID Analytics by Ipsos Public Affairs, 58 percent of respondents cited their Social Security number. Fewer than half as many (24 percent) would be most concerned about having their wallet or purse stolen, while 9 percent said the same about their laptop. Women were more likely than men (63 percent vs. 54 percent) to point to their Social Security number as the item whose theft would distress them the most.

Giving the topic an odder twist, the poll (fielded last month) also asked people whether they would “rather reduce their risk of identity theft by 20 percent than lose 20 pounds.” (Who knew those were likely alternatives?) Given that choice, 58 percent of respondents said they’d rather reduce their risk of identity theft.