Unemployment Insurance Fraud: How to Protect Your Company and Employees

June 12, 2020

While many tech companies employ safeguards around clients’ data, protecting this data is a shared responsibility. Reviewing and sharing resources (such as this article) with your organization are great ways to help ensure you are doing everything you can to protect your data. Working together to protect data is the only way to truly keep your company safe.

What is unemployment insurance fraud?

With unemployment claims at an all-time high, the prevalence of unemployment insurance fraud is on the rise as well. Unemployment insurance fraud has a wide range of definitions that involve both employers and claimants. Today, we are going to concentrate specifically on fraudulent claims being submitted using victims’ information obtained through identity theft. State and Federal agencies have released alerts that a well-organized fraud ring has been targeting victims in Washington state, Florida, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, and Wyoming by submitting false unemployment claims using their stolen information. While these states have been the primary target so far, all state unemployment agencies are vulnerable to this type of fraud. The goal of these fraudsters is to take advantage of state unemployment agencies having to process a higher volume of claims in order to steal benefits, even if the victim has not previously filed a claim.

What do I do if an employee is a victim of unemployment insurance fraud?

Whenever an employee discovers they are a victim of unemployment insurance fraud, it is important to report to the appropriate state agency as soon as possible. The U.S. Department of Labor has published a list of websites and phone numbers for every state agency with recommendations and forms to notify them of fraud. Reach out to your specific state agency for guidance on what steps you and the employee need to take to document the fraud.

If the employee is a victim of unemployment insurance fraud, it is also likely they are a victim of identity theft. Victims can visit IdentityTheft.gov to build a custom recovery plan that will guide employees step-by-step on how they can recover and protect themselves.

How do I protect my organization and employees from unemployment insurance fraud?

Many individual states have posted guidance on what employers and employees can do to protect themselves from this type of fraud. You can find your state’s resources by visiting the Department of Labor website on unemployment insurance fraud.

You can also notify the individuals when you receive notifications about their unemployment claims to detect unemployment fraud early on. This will allow you to get feedback if they are a victim of fraud and provide them the resources they need to report and recover.

How can I help my organization defend against identity theft?

Did you know that 58% of cyber attack victims are small businesses—and that more than half go out of business as a result? Your business needs to be prepared, and Netchex can help you improve your cyber readiness.

Netchex has partnered with Cyber Readiness Institute (CRI), a program designed to empower small and medium-sized enterprises to improve their cyber readiness. By becoming more secure and resilient, businesses can avoid or more effectively respond to and manage cyber incidents that can damage or destroy their business.

This partnership enables us to provide our clients with access to free security programs and more security-focused content, including webinars, blog posts, and newsletters, like this one!

Clients and prospects can sign up today for the free security program and access great resources. When you sign up, enter NETCHEX as your Champion Referral Code. Click here to sign up.
Have more questions or concerns?

Please contact our Netchex Information Security Team at InfoSec@NetchexOnline.com with any additional questions or concerns you may have about payroll phishing or security at Netchex. 

If you would like more information on all the Netchex safeguards already in place to keep your data safe, view our Netchex Data Security Whitepaper. Also, our latest SOC 1 and SOC 2 reports detailing Netchex’s audited security processes can be provided to current and prospective clients upon request with an executed, current non-disclosure agreement.


Netchex is the leading HCM partner helping you improve workforce management and optimizing benefits for your employees. Our powerful, yet user-friendly technology simplifies the business of HR and bring self-service features to your company to provide more independence for your team.

Talk to us to find out how to put Netchex to work for your company. Take a look at our full suite of HCM solutions that grow with your business, including payroll, compliance, HR, benefits administration, and time & attendance, backed by experts and the best technology in the industry.