Gartner Research

Online Identity Theft: Growing Threat Prompts Tighter Controls over Personal Information

Published: 06 January 2005

ID: G00203004

Analyst(s): Mike Neuenschwander


Identity theft is becoming one of the most pervasive and costly forms of fraud. More than a phenomenon in the consumer credit sector, enterprises are becoming significant targets through phishing attacks, domain spoofing, and insider fraud. In this overview, Online Identity Theft: Growing Threat Prompts Tighter Controls over Personal Information, associate research director Mike Neuenschwander discusses the international nature of this problem. The overview also provides recommendations on how enterprises can guard against the threat of identity theft.

Table Of Contents



  • Not Lost in Translation: Identity Theft as an International Phenomenon
  • Exploitation of the Weak Identifier
  • The Threat Within
  • Consequences of Identity Theft
  • Federation and Outsourcing
  • Recommendations
    • Structural Prevention
    • Technical Prevention

The Details

  • The Difficulty with Identity
  • Identity in the Credit Bureau
  • Sizing Up the Problem
  • Attack Vectors for Identity Capture
    • Social Engineering
    • Printed Materials
    • Shoulder Surfing and Cell Phone Cameras
    • Phishing
    • Spam
    • Domain Name and Header Spoofing
    • Spyware and Malware
    • Insider Fraud
    • Databases
    • Networks
  • Thwarting Identity Thieves
    • Legislation and Regulations for Identity Theft
    • Standards and Guidelines
    • Technology Tools for Avoiding Identity Theft



Related Research and Recommended Reading

©2020 Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Gartner is a registered trademark of Gartner, Inc. and its affiliates. This publication may not be reproduced or distributed in any form without Gartner’s prior written permission. It consists of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization, which should not be construed as statements of fact. While the information contained in this publication has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, Gartner disclaims all warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of such information. Although Gartner research may address legal and financial issues, Gartner does not provide legal or investment advice and its research should not be construed or used as such. Your access and use of this publication are governed by Gartner’s Usage Policy. Gartner prides itself on its reputation for independence and objectivity. Its research is produced independently by its research organization without input or influence from any third party. For further information, see Guiding Principles on Independence and Objectivity.

Already have a Gartner Account?

Become a client

Learn how to access this content as a Gartner client.