Identity theft is on the rise in the United States. According to the Federal Trade Commission's Consumer Sentinel Network report, the number of reported cases more than doubled from about 650,500 in 2019 to 1.39 million in 2020. Identity theft cases continued to grow nationwide in 2021 when a total of 1.43 million cases were reported to the FTC.

Identity theft is a crime that involves theft of an individual's personal information and credentials - such as their Social Security number or bank information - often for the purposes of financial fraud. One possible explanation for the surge in 2020 is the pandemic and the legislation that included more than $5 trillion in various government benefits to help financially strapped Americans. This provided a larger scale opportunity for scammers and identity thieves.

In Maine, there were 2,239 cases of identity theft logged by the FTC in 2021, or 167 for every 100,000 people - the 12th lowest population-adjusted case rate among states.

All told, fraud and scams - including those committed through identity theft - resulted in $9.7 million in losses in the state in 2021. The typical fraud case in Maine resulted in the loss of about $400 last year.

All data used in this story is from the FTC's 2021 Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book.

 

RankStateIdentify theft reports per 100,000 people, 2021Total identify theft cases, 2021Total losses from fraud, 2021 ($M)Typical loss from fraud case, 2021 ($)
1Rhode Island2,85730,27011.6447
2Kansas1,35539,46119.9429
3Illinois924117,056129.0450
4Louisiana73234,04330.0422
5Georgia61865,666113.0500
6Nevada58417,98569.6616
7Colorado58333,57288.0479
8New York563109,466280.9500
9Delaware5605,44914.1500
10Florida515110,675331.3532
11Texas504146,095369.4500
12Maryland49329,77894.0518
13Ohio43150,42186.3375
14Pennsylvania42554,460120.9400
15Alabama40219,69144.7423
16Arizona38628,108116.0515
17New Jersey35931,857122.2508
18South Carolina34317,64246.4400
19California337133,119820.9600
20Mississippi3339,90623.4400
21Tennessee29720,25462.6400
22North Carolina28930,31893.0446
23Massachusetts24016,56691.3500
24Kentucky23310,41630.6350
25Virginia22519,214112.9500
26New Mexico2204,61123.2500
27Missouri21813,37252.3361
28Hawaii2112,99322.5620
29Arkansas2116,35816.7450
30Michigan20620,55683.3400
31Wisconsin19311,25348.7390
32Oregon1908,01665.4500
33Utah1896,06037.3500
34Connecticut1876,66640.9460
35Indiana17611,86646.9400
36Oklahoma1736,85026.9410
37Washington17012,917135.7500
38Minnesota1689,45760.3482
39Maine1672,2399.7400
40New Hampshire1622,20513.7450
41West Virginia1592,84510.2350
42Idaho1522,71916.9396
43Vermont13282510.0337
44North Dakota1319998.9440
45Nebraska1252,40914.3450
46Alaska12289613.1600
47Iowa1193,75821.2379
48Wyoming1076207.8500
49Montana1061,1309.6436
50South Dakota766736.8489