In the age of social media, spreading the word to consumers on how to keep their identity safe is as vital as ever, and Wells Fargo is helping do just that. San Francisco-based Wells Fargo, the country’s fourth largest bank by assets, has come up with seven pieces of advice on protecting personal information – the kind of tips that can help keep credit card and identity fraud at bay. The bank co-sponsored the Javelin Strategy & Research ID Fraud Survey, which found that the number of identity theft victims in the United States rose 12 percent to 11.1 million last year.

Credit card fraud surged in 2009 as the No. 1 form of rising identity theft, and it now comprises 75 percent of I.D. crime cases, according to a survey of 5,000 adults by Javelin Strategy & Research, the California-based research firm. That credit card portion of I.D. fraud is up from 63 percent in 2008, Javelin’s study found. The overall number of identity theft victims in the United States rose 12 percent to 11.1 million last year, the firm’s findings show.

The New York Attorney General’s office is investigating 22 popular online retailers that “deceptively” link consumers to fee-based membership programs labeled as discount offers, the state’s attorney General, Andrew M. Cuomo, announced today. Already, Cuomo’s office said it has reached an agreement with the online movie ticket retailer Fandango to end such a practice.