Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personally identifying information, like your name, Social Security number, or credit card number, without your permission, to commit fraud or other crimes.
While some identity theft victims can resolve their problems quickly, others spend hundreds of dollars and many days repairing damage to their good name and credit record.
Identity Theft Prevention Tips
Do not give out personal information over the phone, mail or Internet unless you have initiated the contact or know the person you are dealing with.
Shred all documents that contain personal identifying information including pre-approved credit applications, insurance forms, bank checks and statements.
Do not use your mother’s maiden name, birth date, last four digits of your social security card or other ‘easy’ numbers as passwords.
Minimize the amount of identifying cards and credit cards you carry with you. Take only what you need.
Do not carry your social security card, passport or birth certificate unless specifically needed.
Do not put your driver’s license number on your checks.
Make a list of your credit card and bank account numbers and keep it in a safe place in the event you need to cancel