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CyberScout, a leading provider of identity theft education, defense, and resolution services, announced today that David H. Cohen, Ph.D., will join the company's advisory board as Chief Advisor for University Relations.
Dr. Cohen has been Professor of Biological Sciences and Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University since 1995, when he joined the university to serve as the Vice President for Arts and Sciences and Dean of the Faculty. He recently stepped down from this position to rejoin the faculty. Between 1986 and 1995, Dr. Cohen was Vice President for Research and Dean of the Graduate School and then Provost at Northwestern University, where he was also Professor of Neurobiology and Physiology. Dr. Cohen has served as Chairman of the Association of American Medical Colleges and as Vice President for the National Society for Medical Research, among other such positions. He has also served on numerous boards of directors and editorial boards, and has served on advisory committees for such organizations as the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the National Academy of Sciences and Institute of Medicine.
"Students, educators, and staff at our colleges and universities are at especially high risk of identity theft," said Cohen. "To defend effectively against this threat requires a threefold approach. First, members of the academic community must fully understand the dangers and how to protect against them. Second, colleges and universities must implement truly secure practices in the handling of sensitive personal information, such as Social Security numbers. Finally, students, educators, and staff need the tools and support to defend against identity theft and to respond quickly and effectively if they are struck by this crime. In my new role as Chief Advisor for University Relations, I look forward to advising CyberScout on how best to assist academic institutions in achieving these objectives."
Nearly 10 million Americans became victims of identity theft in 2002, according to the Federal Trade Commission — a 41 percent increase over the year before — making identity theft the fastest-growing crime in America, at a cost to the U.S. economy of approximately $53 billion. Dormitory burglaries, unsolicited credit card offers, financial inexperience, susceptibility to scams, and insecure grade-posting practices put college students at especially high risk. In one indication of the seriousness of this threat, the U.S. Department of Education has recently announced a campaign to increase student awareness of identity theft.
"Unfortunately, many college students don't realize how serious and long-lasting the damage from identity theft can be," said CyberScout Chairman Adam Levin, a former director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs. "We're delighted to have someone of David Cohen's vision and experience advising us as we work with colleges and universities to deal with this crisis."
"The risk of identity theft to students and educators has reached an intolerable level," said CyberScout COO Sheryl Christenson, "and the stakes are extraordinarily high. Solving this problem will require bold steps and a concerted effort by everyone involved. David Cohen will be an invaluable asset to the CyberScout advisory board as we undertake the initiatives needed to help bring this crisis under control."
CyberScout provides one-on-one counseling, strategies, and resources to victims and potential targets of identity theft. Combining a personal focus with a comprehensive nationwide resource network, the company helps individuals, enterprises, financial institutions and other credit providers, colleges and universities, and law enforcement to deal with the devastating effects of this crime.
CyberScout gives victims what they need most: personal, expert guidance through the complex process of resolving their crisis. The company, independently or through its strategic partners, also helps potential targets to identify vulnerabilities and secure their defenses with a suite of products and services that includes credit monitoring, identity fraud insurance, secure mailboxes, cybersecurity solutions, and its Identity Lock™ Defense Package. Its website, www.identitytheft911.com, provides the latest information on this complex topic, from new legislation to fraud alerts and breaking news.