If you are thinking about adding employer-paid identity protection to your benefits package, you may have questions about the value such a benefit brings to both your employees and your business. As a benefits manager, you’re responsible for vetting an array of options to find benefits that provide the perfect mix of utility, necessity, and […]
5 Reasons Why Your Employees Need an Employer-Paid Identity Theft Protection Benefits
The surge in the number of Americans impacted by identity theft each year—at last count the figure topped 16.7 million—has led to more and more consumers to seek identity theft protection. Employees today are aware of the possibility of a hacker stealing vital personal data, such as social security numbers, which has the potential to damage their financial health considerably. Employers, too, are recognizing the link between identity theft incidence among their workers and the resulting drop in productivity and performance.
As a result, more businesses than ever are offering identity theft protection programs as part of their employee benefits package. If you are considering an identity theft protection initiative, here are five reasons why this is a sound investment in your employees:
1) An ounce of prevention…
The sheer size and scope of identity theft expected to take place in the United State this year means chances are good that dozens of your employees will be victims of an identity crime. In an organization of 500, 25 will be victims of an identity crime. For a 5,000-employee company, that figure climbs to 250. The type of theft is likely to vary—from credit card and tax fraud to mobile phone, medical, and banking fraud. By offering a benefit to your employees that includes fraud alerts and credit monitoring, ID theft can be stopped before it ever starts—saving employees hours of financial stress and lost productivity at work.
2) Their time is your money
When employees are at work, you expect them to be productive and focused; able to think clearly about the task in front of them. Identity theft robs them of their ability to do this. When an employee needs to resolve identity theft, they can spend dozens of hours spread out over months sending emails, waiting on hold to speak to credit card companies, and battling banks and health insurance companies over charges. What’s more, these institutions keep business hours, making it virtually impossible for nine-to-five workers to resolve identity theft issues on their own time. And for cases of major fraud—ie, an employee discovers someone bought a house under their name in another state—the event is massively disruptive and may require even more time to fix.
3) Their financial health can be secured
We know that financial well-being (or rather lack of it) is a major source of stress for employees. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, financial insecurity leads to greater absenteeism and tardiness, in addition to a decrease in workplace performance. That’s why 84 percent of companies now offer employee financial security benefits in their wellness programs, and identity protection benefits are an easy and affordable addition to this package. An ID theft protection benefit provides fraud alerts that can stop identity theft before it starts. And if for some reason ID theft does occur, one simple phone call for your covered employees ensures access to a personal fraud investigation and repair team who will handle every facet of their case.
4. Take the worry out of identity repair
If your identity was used to purchase a house in Florida, would you know who to call to fix the situation? If a criminal was apprehended with your name on his driver’s license while driving a car registered in your name, would you know where to begin? Depending on the fraud, the repair process might include coordinating with numerous institutions, agencies, and providers. For those who don’t routinely work in the identity repair space, it’s a tangled, time-consuming world to navigate. With an identity protection benefit, employees make one simple call and a fraud investigation team does the rest, including contacting credit bureaus, correcting erroneous information, working with state/local authorities to prosecute thieves, and communicating with banks for restitution. All in about a tenth of the time it would take someone unfamiliar with the process. Simply put, access to a fraud team relieves the manual effort and stress from the victim, leaving them able to focus on their job.
5. Utilization = efficacy
Why offer an employer-paid identity protection benefit versus an employee-paid option? Because the rates of enrollment are significantly higher in employer-paid scenarios. And the more employees who participate, the greater the chance they’ll reap all the benefits of an identity protection and repair service when they need it.
How can an Identity Protection benefits program impact your organization? In a related post, we dive into the reasons why an employer-paid benefit is good for business. Read it here.
1Fidelity Investments and the National Business Group on Health (NBGH)