5 Tips to Prevent and Correct Identity Theft
While identity theft has been around for a long time, it seems to be becoming more and more common both online and off. For this reason, you need to make sure you are fully protected from identity thieves. To reduce your risk of becoming a victim, check out these five tips to prevent and correct identity theft.1. Create Unique Passwords Frequently
While it’s tempting to creating one, easy-to-remember password for every account, it also makes it easier for identity thieves to access your information. They simply need to learn your password once and they can access any account that uses the password, including bank accounts.
Even social media passwords should be changed frequently because they may contain some private or financial information that can be used to steal your identity. Don’t forget to change the passwords frequently and make them unique. For example, don’t use your pet’s name or your anniversary.2. Use Caution When Sharing Your Information
Any time you share information online, be careful. This, of course, includes shopping online. You should only buy from reputable online stores that offer secure transfer of information. However, it also includes sharing your information with healthcare providers, banks, credit card providers, etc. Some thieves using phishing techniques that may trick you into providing information.
They may appear to come from your bank or an official company, provider, government department, etc. Lastly, keep your social media accounts private, and avoid sharing too much personal information with followers.3. Get a Security System
While a lot of identity theft occurs online, some thieves prefer the old fashioned method of stealing mail. They may get into your mailbox and take credit card statements, bank statements, medical information, etc. Depending on the type of security system, you may be able to monitor the mailbox and front porch, or fully prevent unauthorized people to get near your mailbox.
Some criminals may take it a step further and break into your home. Once inside, they can easily steal passports, birth records, etc. Even putting them in a small safe may not help if the thief steals the entire safe or lockbox. A security system will stop intruders and provide documentation and proof.4. Consider a Fraud Protection Service
If you want to stay proactive about your identity, one choice is to purchase fraud production services. Many companies will monitor your credit for you, and if they notice something strange, they will contact you and make the appropriate steps to stop more theft and identify the culprit.
If you are a victim of identity theft, they may even cover some costs, such as court costs. This can be a huge advantage because proving identity theft can be extremely expensive. If you are lucky, you may be able to find a security provider who also monitors your electronic devices.5. Monitor Your Credit Report
Whether you choose fraud protection services or not, however, you should monitor your credit report. Many companies allow you to check your credit for free or a fee. If the site is free, the credit checks are likely limited, so it may be best to pay for a subscription that allows you to monitor your credit score and report more frequently.
This allows you to see exactly what has been added to your report, so if any fraudulent accounts are opened in your name, you’ll notice before it’s too late. Don’t forget to check all credit reporting bureaus because they may contain different information. If you do notice a fraudulent account, contact the police and the affected lender. You should also put an alert on your credit report, notifying lenders of the potential fraud.
Identify theft can cost you a lot of money to correct, which is why preventing it and catching it early is important. By protecting your information online and inside your own home, you reduce your risk. For more information about how a good security system can help keep your information private and protected, contact us at A Tech today.