According to IT authorities, Identity theft is a crime that is estimated to affect over 9 million Americans per year. Every individual must take measures to protect themselves from falling victim to this growing crime.
Protect yourself and your staff from identity theft with these basic tips:
Subscribe to an identity theft protection service app or software
Several companies offer services to help you in the case that you become victim to identity theft. For information on some of these services, please see our reviews of identity theft products.
Subscribe to employee monitoring software or services to check your staff’s online activities at work
Through Veriato 360, IT Authorities were able to take quick action on questionable employee and unsafe activity, immediately leading to an overall increase in productivity as well as safety in the office.
Keep personal documents especially those with crucial data in a safe
Consider keeping a personal safe for your home as well as a safety deposit box elsewhere. You can use your safe at home to protect items such as your social security card, birth certificate and passport.
Protect your purse or wallet at all times
The best wallets and purses are those that can be zipped or closed shut. Try not to use bags that others can easily see or reach into, and keep bags close to your body with a tight grip at all times. Do not leave wallets or purses in the car, or if you must, do not leave them exposed or in an obvious place.
Photocopy the contents of your wallet
Photocopy the details embedded on your credit cards, ID cards, and all other personal documents you keep in your wallet. Also, keep records of phone numbers to contact in case you need to close accounts or order replacement items.
Check your bank account statements regularly to make sure that your accounts have no unauthorized charges
If your account does have unauthorized transactions, contact your banking institution immediately.
Unsubscribe from promotional lists such as junk mail and pre-approved credit card lists
This added clutter doesn’t do you good, and you at risk of ID theft if a stranger gets their hands on your pre-approved cards.
Cancel credit cards that you aren’t using
There’s no reason to have open credit that might be at risk. Besides, the less credit you have open, the less you’ll have to monitor.
Create passwords that are very hard for others to uncover
An impersonal combination of letters, punctuation and numbers is the best.
Protect your computer with anti-spyware and anti-virus software
However, always make sure you keep them up to date.
Do not give away personal information to unverified sources on the Internet
If you do not trust the source feel free to request verifying information before giving anything up.
Do credit monitoring
Take advantage of your free credit reports and consider purchasing additional copies throughout the year for continuous credit monitoring. Consider placing fraud alerts and credit freezes on your account for greater protection.
Shred confidential documents before taking them to the trash
Going through the trash is a common way of stealing personal information for the sake of identity fraud. Buy a shredder for your office and make sure you destroy paperwork containing personal information before discarding. This includes mail, credit card statements and even receipts.