It is an unfortunate statistic that many millions of people across the nation continue to be affected by identity theft, costing billions of dollars stolen. Many stemming from seemingly harmless behaviors such as making purchases over the phone, recycling old bills, and logging into free Wi-Fi have been known to spark identity theft cases. Take a look at how to best protect your identity from theft.
Steps to Protect Your Identity
Shred identity papers – When it comes to identity thieves, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure – and a sure way of hacking into your accounts. Some criminals will wade through trash to find billing statements and account numbers. Be sure to cross-cut shred your account statements, receipts, and promotional credit offers so that thieves cannot gain access to your account.
Review your credit report often – Take the time to order a free credit report each year from one of the three credit report agencies. Verify your information, correct misspellings, and fix any errors that may be impacting your credit. Mistakes and red flags should be reported by contacting each agency directly.
Avoid using public Wi-Fi – Hackers take advantage of those on public Wi-Fi by accessing your account information when you log into your bank app. Ideally, avoid using public Wi-Fi if you don’t know it is secure and protected.
Follow up on credit inquiries – Read your credit reports on a regular basis and you will find that most of the new activity will be inquiries from lenders trying to check your credit. You initiate these inquiries when you apply for a new card or loan, or even when you apply for a new job.
Use protection and encryption tools on your computer – Install a firewall on your personal computer network, make sure you have a password-protected wireless system at home, and update your passwords for accounts seasonally.
These tips can help you to protect your identity. For all of your personal and commercial insurance needs, contact the team at Kneller Agency.
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