The first half of 2008 saw a 47 per cent rise in cases of application fraud where new finance was approved, it has been reported.
Cifas, the UK’s fraud prevention service, said the identities of innocent people may have been used to obtain money illegally. Equifax, releasing the figures, has warned that those targeted by fraudsters may have suffered damage to their credit status.
Neil Munroe, external affairs director of Equifax said: “More often than not you don’t know you have been a victim until you are rejected for credit or you receive a letter from a debt collector.”
He said it was “vital” to keep a professional eye on credit information to ensure there have been no changes.
A poor credit rating may restrict accessibility to loans and credit cards which may ultimately lead to debt if borrowing is essential to future plans.
Mr Munroe recommended his company’s low-cost monitoring service to keep abreast of personal credit information.
By Morwenna Kearns