Why Identity Crime is a Challenge for Investigators
There are several common elements in identity crime that present significant challenges to investigators. As described above, many of these crimes are quite complex, and their nature often means that they share some of the following characteristics:
- The investigation requires involvement from a wide range of entities of many types, e.g., financial institutions, credit card companies, debt collectors, medical records companies, etc.
- The crime is generally multi-jurisdictional.
- The evidence is often “virtual," and therefore hard to gather. Cases will rely upon a digital “paper trail” and digital security video necessitating speed in recovery to preclude overwriting as businesses struggle to maintain data storage in today’s growing e-business environment.
- Gathering evidence may require special knowledge and skills such as specialized forensic knowledge for securing digital evidence, etc.
- The cases are difficult to prosecute.
These elements pose significant challenges for law enforcement and point to the need for investigators to build new partnerships and acquire new skills in order to address these crimes.