London, Nov 17 : Internet crooks are selling complete financial identities for just 80 pounds in Britain, according to an online safety group.
The Get Safe Online group, which is backed by police, government and banks, has revealed that Britons are losing their names, addresses, passport numbers and confidential financial data like credit card numbers to internet fraudsters, willing to make money as soon as possible.
According to Serious Organised Crime Agency, fraudsters are selling personal information for as little as five pounds per piece of data or 80 pounds for an entire package.
Branding it a serious problem, the online safety group calls for new ways to protect identities online.
Almost six out of 10 people in UK are managing their finances online, making themselves vulnerable to ID theft.
Experts warn that too many people use the same password for key websites, making it easier for bank details and other sensitive data to be gathered.
Online marketplaces, often sited in countries with lax controls against e-crime, sell data gathered in concerted attacks against poorly defended computers.
People have not been using defensive measures such as a firewall, or up-to-date software, which can identity malicious programs.
Tony Neate of Get Safe Online said fraudsters buying details online try to use personal information to make money as quickly as possible.
"Online criminal activity can be a sophisticated business, but each of us can take steps to prevent ourselves from becoming a victim," the BBC quoted Neate as saying.
"If Internet users invest a relatively small amount of time and money in ensuring they are fully protected and up-to-date, the risk of such financial loss is almost negligible," he added.