Simple Steps to Protect Your Home and Yourself from Identity Theft
Identity Theft is real. It can really turn your life upside down. It can keep you from buying a home or a car and ruin your credit.
Check out this video. It’s dramatic, but according to identity theft prevention specialists, it’s real and it’s this easy. It’s from a Belgian bank and sub-titled in English. Note: there’s a bit of profanity at the end.
Preventing identity theft can be difficult, but here’s a few things to avoid doing that will go a long way toward protecting yourself:
Some Things to Do to Protect Yourself
- Never reply to an email from your bank, Paypal or any other financial institution. If you think the email may be legitimate, call you bank or type in the banks web address to access your account. This is called phishing and thieves do it because it works.
- If you do reply to an email and enter your username and password and get an error or the site won’t allow you in, you have probably been hacked. Call your bank immediately and lock down your accounts.
- Review your accounts daily. Yes, it’s a pain, but it really must be done to protect your accounts and avoid problems with your bank if something goes wrong.
- Never complain on social media about your bank by name. That makes it easy for thieves to identify who you bank with and start the process of hacking.
- Don’t tell people where you are on Facebook or Twitter when you’re away from home. There’s two reasons. First, your home may be robbed. Second, thieves may enter your home and while nothing appears to be missing, they’ve found all your identity information. You don’t have locked file cabinets at home, do you?
It’s Going to Happen
Sadly, it’s highly likely that you will have your identity compromised in some way. It’s happened to us recently when auto parts were ordered on one of our cards from an auto parts supplier in Punjab India. The card was no longer active, but the thieves were still able to get the transaction through. Our bank reversed the charges within 24 hours, but it happened.
Have a plan in place for when you’re hack. Have all the access information for your bank easily available in a secure place for when something goes wrong. You may consider some sort of identify theft protection; just Google it to see your options.
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