We all think that we protect ourselves as much as possible against someone stealing our identity. Using anti-virus and spyware software on our computer, not clicking or opening strange emails or avoiding certain web sites.
Unfortunately there are still ways no matter how much you try for others to steal your identity. People will steal mail, go through your garbage and many other ways to take over another person’s credit history.
A co-worker may get a hold of your social security number and apply for a credit card. A worker at a store or restaurant my use your current credit card information to open a new account. There are many ways these crooks use to get your information.
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When someone steals your identity they steal more than just your credit. It effects your well being, health and every day social life. Trusting others becomes an issue and you may never feel at peace.
In order to prevent identity theft be sure to check your credit report once a year for free at http://www.annualcreditreport.com this is the governments free web site where you can trust your information and receive your credit report for free.
Shred any important documents before putting them in the garbage. Even if you receive credit card offers either shred these, black out important information and tear everything up before throwing it away.
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If you receive phone calls from someone requesting your social security or other personal information do not give it to them. If your bank or health care provider calls you they already have this information and should not ask for anything unless you are calling them.
Protect your information on your computer from hackers. Keep your operating system updated, protect your computer with an anti virus program and be aware of what you download. The Internet can be a dangerous place. Ordering through the internet as long as you are using a safe and secure web site. Change passwords often and try to log onto personal accounts through your home computer and not a public or work computer.
Report any stolen credit cards immediately. Make sure to review any bank and credit statements right away. Don’t always wait for them to come in the mail. Instead check them online and for extra precaution have your statements sent to you electronically and not through the mail.
Be careful of your pin numbers, passwords etc. Don’t carry them with you. If you stop receiving mail suddenly check with the post office to make sure that no one has forwarded your mail to another address.
Do your best to learn ways to protect your identity. Thieves are always looking for ways to get your information and will never stop but you can prevent them and make it more difficult.