The idea that your identity is in jeopardy seems crazy to most folks. Most of the time, people don’t even think about someone trying to steal their identity.
As long as you’ve got your wallet in your purse or pocket, you might imagine everything is okay. The truth is that identity theft can happen at any time, and criminals have many ways of stealing your identity.
Okay, so what does this type of theft involve? It happens when a criminal uses another person’s personal information and pretends to be them. This is usually done to apply for credit cards or to use your cards to make purchases. The problem gets worse, especially now with the ways the internet can expose your identity to potential criminals.
This type of theft can put your financial history in jeopardy, and it can take a long time to recover from.
There’s a lot you can do to try to prevent this from happening like you can learn to always cover yourself before you put your pin in as you pay with your card. These criminals like to stand behind people as they pay to try to get their PIN numbers. Do your best to cover yourself well and look behind you.
You also want to avoid opening emails or following links that you don’t know anything about. Sometimes, links and emails are used to capture valuable information from you.
The type of information they look for is your name, social security number, address, and bank account number. You need to guard all of this information. Don’t give it out to anyone unless you know for sure that you can trust them. Be sure to protect the most vulnerable around you, like the elderly.
Be careful when it comes to security questions. With social media, folks tend to share more than they need to. For example, you don’t want to choose a security question that you’ve revealed on your social media accounts because this question may be compromised. Remember what you’ve talked about online, and make sure your security questions contain answers you haven’t shared.
It might be a good idea to invest in identity protection software. This will help identify threats at any point and alert you if something’s happening with any of your accounts. If something is detected, you can act quickly and prevent these criminals from wreaking havoc on your finances.
You should also turn on transaction notifications. Each bank and credit card has a program like this. You get email alerts after every purchase that way you catch purchases you haven’t made the moment they’re made. Consider making your passwords harder to crack by adding more symbols and making the passwords difficult. In addition to that, you should also make sure you change your passwords at least every six months just to be safe.
If you want, you could purchase identity theft insurance, which should help cover expenses linked to this kind of theft. It may seem like another bill to worry about, but it can give you peace of mind.
Hopefully, all of this can help you identify this type of theft and prevent it.