HSBC Is The Most Identity-Theft Prone Bank

If you’re a customer with Bank of America or HSBC, you’re more likely to be a victim of identity theft, according to a new report. Chris Hoofnagle, a senior fellow at the Berkeley Center for Law and Technology at the University of California at Berkeley, compiled a list of all the banks mentioned in identity theft complaints filed with the FTC for January, March and September of 2006. Bigger banks obviously have more incidents, so Hoofnagle factored in their total number of deposits.”I’ve been working for years to try to spark a market, a true market, for competition on preventing fraud,” Hoofnagle told the NYT. “Some of these institutions have attempted to compete based on advertisements, but I’m a real believer in the idea that if you give consumers information, they can make better decisions.” This is only a fraction of the banks included, showing the worst offenders. Full graphs, inside…

It should be noted that the conclusions are less than perfect. What would be ideal is if the number of incidents were ranked by the number of accounts at the bank, not the total number of deposits. However, banks closely guard the number of their depositors and so for now, this is the best we have.incidentspermonth.jpgestimatedannual.jpgTAKEAWAY: HSBC, Bank of America: not safe. ING: safe.