Administered to persons age 16 or older who completed an in-person National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) interview, the Identity Theft Supplement (ITS) asks respondents if they had experienced identity theft during the past 12 months. The ITS encompasses several types of identity theft, such as the misuse of an existing account, misuse of personal information to open a new account, and other misuses of personal information. Persons who had reported experiencing at least one incident in the past 12 months were asked to describe characteristics of the most recent incident and its effects.
Persons who report experiencing one or more incidents of identity theft during the prior 12 months are asked questions about the incident and their response, such as how they discovered the identity theft, problems resulting from the incident, time spent resolving associated problems, and whether they reported to police and credit bureaus. For most sections of the survey instrument, victims who experienced multiple incidents during the reference period describe only the most recent incident. It asks victims who experienced multiple incidents of identity theft during the year to provide details on the total financial losses they experienced as a result of all incidents. It also asks respondents a series of questions about identity theft they experienced outside of the reference period and about measures they took to avoid or minimize the risk of becoming a victim of identity theft.