You or even your
children can become a victim of identity theft when someone
steals your personal information for the purpose of utilizing it to
generate comparable duplicated identities without your
Your personal information (i.e. social security
numbers, passport, birth date, banking information, etc.) is used to
illegally apply for credit and loans, buy services, purchase goods
and/or cloak a criminals true identity for the purpose of taking
part in even greater criminal activities.
Below are a few simple tips for you to follow to
help yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft.
- When you order checks from your bank, do not put your first and
last name on the checks. Only have them print your initials. This
way, in the event that someone steals your checkbook, they will not
know what your name is for signing the checks.
- Contact your credit card companies and make them require a photo
ID to be shown when making purchases instead of checking the
signature on the back of the card. This way, a crook will not be
able to forge your name.
- If you pay your credit card bills with a check every month, never
write your credit card account number on the 'For' line of your
checks. As an alternative, only write the last four digits. Your
credit card company knows your full account number, and any
potential identity thief that comes in the path of your payment will
not have access to any sensitive information.
- Never put your home phone number on checks. Use your work phone
instead. Same with your address. If you have a PO Box, utilize that.
If not, write your work address.
- You never want to put your social security
numbers on any check on paperwork that you are sending in regular
mail. If you must mail your SSN, utilize First Class mail. This way,
you can track your package for the entire shipment.
- Make photocopies of everything in your wallet including your
license and your credit cards, etc.. This way, you are fully aware
of what is in your wallet in the event that it is stolen. You will
still have easy access to all of your account numbers and the phone
numbers needed to call in the event that you need to cancel your
accounts. Keep these documents in a safe, private place in your
house. In addition, if you are traveling, carry a copy of your
passport with you in your luggage. This way, if you lose or have
your passport stolen, you are not stuck in a foreign country without
- Whenever you are checking out from a hotel that has key that are
cards, do not hand-over the keys/cards. Take the keys with you and
get rid of them yourself by ripping them up and/or burning them.
These small cards contain all of your personal information that you
provided to the hotel. This can include your address and all of your
credit card information. A thief with a device that can read these
cards can access all of that information without any problems at
Detect. Defend. Avoid ID Theft.
IdentityTheft.org - Identity
Theft Prevention and Survival
Detecting Identity Theft
Seniors and Identity Theft
What To Do If You are a Victim of Identity Theft
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