Florida is No. 3 in nation for identity-theft complaints

Identity theft continues to be the chief complaint reported to the Federal Trade Commission, data reported this week shows, and identity-theft incidents in Florida climbed about 25 percent in 2008.

Overall, the report ranks Florida third in the country for identity-theft complaints per capita.

The FTC tracks consumer-fraud and identity-theft complaints filed with several agencies and received more than 1.2 million complaints in 2008. More than a quarter of the reports had to do with identity theft.

The Miami-Fort Lauderdale metropolitan area ranked 21st in the nation for identity-theft complaints: There were about 200 per 100,000 people living in the area.

And as a whole, there were some 24,440 identity-theft complaints statewide. Credit-card fraud was the most common complaint, with fraud related to government documents the runner-up locally and nationwide. Fraud using government documents increased by 62 percent in Florida.

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