California Unemployment Identity Theft Skyrockets
By Lucas Van De Graaff, Marketing –
It is hardly a secret that unemployment fraud is on the rise due to the concerningly high levels of jobless claims staying higher than levels during the 2008-2009 Great Recession due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With so many people struggling with joblessness, and government and private assistance increasing for the unemployed, several others are attempting to steal other people’s identities to get in on the free handouts.
It’s a problem when some 837,000 Americans filed initial claims for unemployment insurance — in just one week. And that number was lower than the week before. And you know the fraud has really gotten out of hand when California’s Employment Development Department had to issue a two-week reset period for all new unemployment claims due to an enormous backlog because they got too many fraudulent claims. Yikes.
California’s Employment Development Department has decided to put in place new anti-fraud technology to tackle the 600,000+ backlog of claims and ease the hassle of identifying new fraudulent cases moving forward. This is necessary because, as we all know, identity theft is no joke. It can be damaging to the lives of those effected by it, even costing some their entire life savings.
The new anti-fraud technology includes biometric-based identity verification processes in addition to a government-issued identification, real-time selfie, and liveness detection (which just checks if the person is where they say they are when they take the selfie). This is going to be a standard practice for all unemployment claims even after the pandemic is over.
These methods could be enhanced with the addition of IdentityDetect®. It analyzes people’s reactions while answering questions, meets anti-money laundering compliance requirements, and stops false biometrics from being categorized as true. With a prized 91% success rate of sniffing out perpetrators of identity theft, this technology, if used in conjunction with the other methods the state of California is now implementing, could all but remove identity theft from any interaction with the government.
Photo by / Cristina Zaragoza