Were you or someone you know a victim of identity theft last year? If so, you're hardly alone — more than 8 million people were victimized in 2010, causing $37 billion in losses, reports Javelin Strategy & Research in San Francisco. Over and above the financial costs, of course, is the time lost rectifying the trouble and the anxiety the process can produce.
"Once discovered, it may take months or even years to recover from this crime," says Owen Malcolm, chief operating officer at Sanders Financial Management in Norcross, Ga. "We've been addressing credit protection and identity theft issues with our clients for some time. It's a core part of every financial plan." Indeed, many planners are adding identity theft to their list of topics to discuss with clients, some after learning personally how traumatic the experience can be.
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