Check out this helpful video from HowCast, which offers Personal Security and Self Defense videos here. It highlights 7 Easy Steps to Prevent ID Theft:
The most important steps to take to prevent identity theft include:
- Watch your wallet: Keep a close eye on your wallet, purse, and other personal belongings at all times.
- Be careful with your mail: Incoming and outgoing mail includes bank and credit card statements, utility bills, and tax documents with your personal information that is a gold mine to thieves.
- Beware of phishing: That’s when someone tricks you into providing your personal financial information through scam letters or emails.
- Beware of skimming: That’s when a clerk swipes your card fraudulently to get your financial information from your debit or credit card.
- Get a free credit report: Every year you are entitled to a free credit report from each of the national credit bureaus, so request one every four months to keep close tabs on any suspicious activities.
- Never leave documents lying around: Keep things in a safe place so people like deliverymen with access to your home don’t also help themselves to your personal information.
- Destroy bills & documents: Always destroy anything that contains personal information discarding it; the easiest way to do this is with a paper shredder.
Following these 7 Easy Steps will help protect you from becoming a victim of identity theft, the fastest growing crime in the country.