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Law to fight identity fraud in US introduced, Australia blocks over 300K attempts

Law to fight identity fraud in US introduced, Australia blocks over 300K attempts

Countries are taking steps to effectively mitigate fraud through identity verification. In the U.S., the Fraud Prevention and Recovery Act was introduced in Congress for fraud prevention and investigation in response to widespread pandemic fraud. At the same time, Australia’s efforts to prevent fraud through its stolen ID register has successfully blocked over 300,000 fraud attempts.

Fraud Prevention and Recovery Act introduced in US Congress

U.S. legislators have introduced the $1.4 billion Fraud Prevention Recovery Act to aid in identity theft recovery in response to rampant pandemic fraud, according to Next Gov.

If passed, the new legislation would invest the budgeted funds in fraud prosecution, prevention, and recovery efforts.

During the pandemic, unemployment insurance saw somewhere between $100 billion and $135 billion in fraud, according to the GSA.

The bill would provide $25 million to expand the Do Not Pay Service, which helps prevent payments to deceased individuals, while $75 million would go to an identity attribute validation system, which allows agencies to validate that a name, date of birth, and social security number match government records while preserving privacy of individuals by delivering an output of yes or no.

Another $275 million would prevent identity theft in public benefits by upgrading identity verification and fraud prevention systems. An identity theft program would be piloted with a $25 million investment, and IdentityTheft.gov would receive $200 to support in crime reporting and recovery assistance.

The COVID-10 Fraud strike force, which has already seized over $1.4 billion in stolen funds from 3,500 defendants, would receive a $300 million investment. The Department of Labor would continue to have access to unemployment insurance datasets to detect multi-state and coordinated fraud, among other investments.

Login.gov is not mentioned in the bill.

Australia’s identity protection reforms block 300,000 fraud attempts

In Australia, identity protections introduced by the Albanese Government after the Optus data breach have successfully blocked over 300,000 fraud attempts in 18 months according to InnovationAus.

The government created the Identity Verification Service Credential Protection Register to protect those whose identities have been compromised in response to the Optus data breach that exposed the personally identifiable information (PII) of 9.8 million current and former Optus customers. It leverages the Document Verification Service to verify the authenticity of identity documents.

Australia’s government provided $3.3 million in the 2023 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) to continue to improve the register. Once finished, document issuers and other relevant organizations will be able to directly update the register in real time.

The 2023 MYEFO also included a $145.5 million investment into expanding the Australian Government Digital ID System.

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