Would You Be More Inclined To Work For A Company That Gave You Identity Theft Insurance As A Benefit?

Last year I had a couple of different identity theft insurance vendors contact me wanting me to endorse their products as they were trying to sell the packages to employers to offer to their employees as part of their total benefits packages.

Basically, for a comparatively small amount of premium payments per employee, the employer would provide the insurance to their personnel, and if any of the employees had their identity stolen, the insurance would cover all the costs, beyond the typical actual amount of dollars lost and credit monitoring. It included reimbursement for such activities as the time it took the employee to fill out associated paperwork and the insurer would in fact do much of the paperwork, it would take care of cancelling credit cards, checking with all the big credit agencies (TransUnion, Equifax, Experian), providing a lawyer to do all the legal actities involved, including perhaps taking the case to court, and other assorted activities.
The idea sounded interesting, and on the front-end good, but I had no knowledge of these vendors, so I passed on their request.
Today I thought about them again, though, as I read a report in this week’s issue of the BNA Privacy and Security Law Report.
(A subscription site.)
The report highlighted how some companies are now offering identity theft insurance to their employees as a benefit.

“Identity theft protection should go far beyond mere credit monitoring because “more than half of identity theft is noncredit related,” Bryan Ansley, chief executive officer of FNB, told BNA. He estimated that clearing up a case of stolen identity takes between 60 and 600 hours, much of which can wind up as lost productivity in the workplace. “Is there any employer who would not want to help with this?” Ansley said. He noted that the chances of being a victim of identity theft are about one in 17 this year, compared with one in 1,800 of filing a homeowner claim and one in 13 of filing a car insurance claim.”

Yes, the cost in hours to clean up a breach of a person’s personally identifiable information (PII) can easily take 600 hours, and I’ve had people tell me about the ongoing years, and thousands of hours, it has cost them, and continues to cost them.
The cost to the employer to provide this insurance was reported to be less than one dollar ($1) per month per covered employee.
This certainly is a very inexpensive benefit to provide to employees, and much less cost to the employer than it would be to each individual employee to try to get such coverage on his or her own.
With the FTC estimating there will be 9 million people in the U.S. who have their identity stolen just this year, this could be a very attractive benefit.
I wonder…if an individual had the choice of working for two potential employers, otherwise equal in benefits and positions, would this coverage sway their decision?
It may very well have an impact, perhaps small but still noticeable, in not only attracting employees, but also retaining employees. Getting and keeping good, experienced, employees is a challenge to many organizations right now.

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