Accreditation Platform Launched to Fight Identity Theft

Data security

By Stephen Hipkin

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Over the preceeding 12 months, more than 920,000 Australians have experienced some form of identity theft costing Australia upwards of $1.6 billion per annum, with the majority lost by individuals through credit card fraud, identity theft and scams, according to the Attorney-General’s Department (2013).

To help combat this critical threat to the Australian community and enabler for serious and organised crime syndicates, Vincents Chartered Accountants has entered into a four year partnership with Identity Care Australia and New Zealand Ltd (iDcare).

A joint public-private partnership operating across Australia and New Zealand, iDcare’s primary objective is to support the interests of victims of identity theft and misuse, offering personalised support to individuals who are concerned about their personal information as well as working with government, business and industry bodies to independently assess their capacity to respond to contemporary and emerging identity theft and misuse risks.

Headed by Stephen Hipkin, forensic director at Vincents, the firm’s partnership with iDcare will enable Vincents to run and manage iDcare’s online accreditation platform.

Mr Hipkin said the Vincents managed accreditation platform enables businesses and the mass market to request iDcare membership, sit an accreditation test  with an immediate and automotatic pass or fail notification following the test, and receive and access iDcare thought leadership and regular briefings.

“iDcare will also have access to members to upload relevant information and monitor interaction and performance,” Mr Hipkin said.

“The online platform also offers a Business Premium Service to members, allowing iDcare to offer an independent assurance and advice line on everything to do with collecting, handling, storing, transmitting and destroying personal information.

“This includes access to iDcare’s alerts and bulletins on the latest scams, technical threats and awareness of volnerabilities to an organisation, their staff and customers; fraud investigation and response support including diagnostics, harm mitigation solutions and informal security remedial assistance; and specialist technical support including email hacking and website takedown response services.”

Mr Hipkin said alongside providing the online accreditation platform, Vincents will become an accreditated iDcare organisation.

“This will involve iDcare accrediting the firm on a one-on-one basis by conducting interviews, reviewing policies and procedures and benchmarking the firm against iDcare’s code of conduct,” he said.

“As an iDcare accredited organisation businesses can show that they are activiely addressing the risk of identity theft,  reassuring clients and staff that their details are safe and secure.”

Mr Hipkin said this partnership also enables Vincents to support iDcare and their accredited members with the provision of business services on an “as needs” basis.

“We will provide fraud risk assessments, forensic investigations, forensic accounting, computer forensics, background due diligence and forensic data analytics as well as a range of other services should it be needed,” he said.

Media enquiries:  Stephen Hipkin (02) 8224 8216

About iDcare

Identity Care Australia & New Zealand Ltd. (“iDcare”) is a joint public-private partnership and membership based organisation operating across Australia and New Zealand that has as its primary object to support the interests of victims of identity theft and misuse, offering personalised support to individuals that are concerned about their personal information. They work with government and industry (large and small) to independently assess their capacity to respond to contemporary and emerging identity theft and misuse risks – whether physical or online. Their given aim is to lift the standards of response, which in turn, mean the impact to clients and consumers from risks to personal information are lessened. iDcare are jointly funded by government and industry. Part of their constitution requires the establishment and monitoring of Codes of Conduct, for which iDcare regulates against accredited member organisations.



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