In Part 1, I shared my sister’s experience with identity theft and three prevention tips to protect your identity . Countless times we have heard stories of identity theft, like identity thieves using pre-approved credit card offers to purchase things in other’s good name.
So, here are 5 additional precautions you can take to prevent identity theft or at least reduce the risk:
4. Shred Documents
Shred all documents including junk mail that shows your personal information before throwing them away. How often have you simply placed your pre-approved credit card offers in the trash? Too many times…right? Moving forward, do this step and prevent identity theft.
5. Get Your Mail
Promptly get your mail, and consider having your mail held by the post office if you are unable to get your mail daily. Stolen mail may be the quickest and easiest way to fall victim to identity theft. If you are out of town often, you may want to get a P.O. BOX.
6. Review Your Bank and Credit Card Statements
If you do not receive your statement as scheduled or if you do not recognize a transaction or charge, immediately call your credit card company or lender. It is possible that you simply forgot you charged the $99.00 iPhone smart battery case when your phone died 2 weeks ago. It is also possible that someone is having a great time at your expense. So, watch for transactions you did not authorize and call your creditor if you do not receive your bill/statement as scheduled.
7. Store Personal Information In a Safe Place
Find a safe place for your paper information and do not share your personal information electronically with unfamiliar or unsolicited sources. Yep, simply do not respond to any request for personal information from unfamiliar sources, and make sure your information is in a safe place. Whether online, by phone or mail, do not provide any personal information unless it is for a valid reason. In addition, if you do not recognize the sender of an email, do not click on the email link.
8. Protect the Identity of Your Children
Speaking of ways to prevent identity theft, September 1st is National Child Identity Theft Awareness Day. National Child Identity Theft Awareness Day is a great reason to become more vigilant for yourself and your children. One key tip to help avoid threats to your child’s most vital information is to follow the other tips provided here and order a free credit report for your child through annualcreditreport.com. If there is any information on the credit report in your child’s name, then your child is a victim of identity theft.
As previously mentioned, anyone can become a victim of identity theft. Fortunately, the sooner you realize there is a problem, the sooner you can take steps to reduce the risk. Use this list and the list in part 1 to assist you in becoming more vigilant.
You can also check out Apprisen’s Consumer Awareness Tips that’ll help you become a smart consumer to prevent identity theft and fraud.
Have you found these tips helpful? Any additional prevention tips you follow to protect your identity? Let me know in the comments below.