Today, you must share personal details to transact, learn and socialize online. Unfortunately, identity thieves extort this info to create accounts which are traded for fraud purposes such as making purchases online, and registering businesses or filling in employment forms. This negatively affects your credit scores, and later costs you time and money in trying to repair the damage.
Because of the numerous glitches in ID theft protection, everyone’s chances of going through ID fraud are more than those of hitting the Powerball. According to a recent study, at least 2 people become victims every 5 minutes. In the United States, banks and consumers lost over 20 billion to fraudsters in the past year. This translates to nearly $40 000 every minute. With hackers always trying to outwit the best security providers, these statistics are bound to increase.
Id theft doesn’t necessarily mean that your fingerprints, voice, and ID are somewhere being used by a hacker in the other side of the world. It could be something as simple as losing your Twitter account to hacking. This sounds frightening but by taking a few precautions, you could at least minimize the chances of you becoming a target.
- Secure your wallet
Virtually everyone keeps their IDs, credit cards, and other important documents in their wallets for easy retrieval. This might change for a few individuals who go through the torment of losing their wallet.
Avoid carrying things that you do not need for the day. Let sorting out the things you need for the day be the first thing you do in the morning. This will not only help you to be aware of the whereabouts of your wallet every time, but it will also reduce the amount of damage done if your lost wallet gets into the hands of an identity thief. For instance, you do not have to carry your social security card every other day or all your bank cards at one time.
Some people are even careless enough to carry their passwords in their wallets. Backing up your passwords and credit card information in an online drive won’t be safe either especially if you are always using public networks; memorize your details if possible!
- Monitor your credit
Most fraudsters won’t fish out a jackpot out of your cards in the first attempt; they will do this gradually. By reviewing your credit and debit card statements daily, you will notice unusual transactions which anyone else might not notice.
- Do not entrust your information to anyone
Avoid being too generous with your real name and street address, especially when you are online. For instance, you could use your name’s initials or completely different names when you are enrolling in customer loyalty programs.
- Make your passwords stronger
Most people set their passwords using their birth dates, their names, or the names of their businesses. Even the most advanced hackers will study what you are most attached to for a trouble free go through. You should also avoid using the same passwords for all your accounts.
Along with the above tips you can opt for identity theft protection services. Just google for these services and if you are looking at a particular protection service, for example, Identity Guard then you can search with the keywords ‘Identity Guard Review’ and you will get to know the reviews of real customers. This will help you in making the right decision.