Saturday, December 13, 2008

Yana Hempler-Identity theft

10 IMPORTANT TIPS!!!!!!!!!

1.Shred all your important papers, sensitive mail, and especially pre-approved credit applications received in your name and other financial information that provides access to your private information. Don't forget to shred your credit card receipts.
2.Empty your wallet of all extra credit cards and social security numbers, etc. Do not carry any identifiers you do not need. Don't carry your birth certificate, social insurance card, or passport.
3.Don’t disclose personal information over the phone. If the person that calls you tells you they are a credit grantor of yours, don’t assume it is true and do not share your credit card number, expiration date, and other personal information. Provide only information that you believe is absolutely necessary.
4.Do not put your social insurance number on your checks or your credit receipts. If a business requests your social security number, give them an alternate number and tell them why. They do not need that to identify you. If a government agency requests your social security number, there must be a privacy notice accompanying the request.
5.Do not put your credit card account number on the Internet (unless it is encrypted on a secured site, the URL begins with https not http). Don't put account numbers on the outside of envelopes, or on your checks.
6.Order your credit report at least twice a year. Review it carefully. If you see anything that appears fraudulent or surprising, immediately put a fraud alert on your reports.
7.Make a list of all your credit card account numbers and bank account numbers (or photocopy) with customer service phone numbers, and keep it in a safe place. (Do not keep it on the hard drive of your computer if you are connected to the Internet.) Also, make photocopies of both sides of your driver’s license and credit cards and keep them safe, just in case your purse/wallet gets stolen.
8.Be careful at ATM's and using Phone Cards. "Shoulder Surfers" can get your "Pin Number" and get access to your accounts. Do not write your pin number on anything that is easily accessible by others (cards, papers that you’re going to throw out, etc).
9.Put passwords on your credit card, bank and home accounts. Avoid using easily available information like your mother's maiden name or your birth date.
10.Have your mail delivered to a secure location. Mail box theft is another common source for identity thieves. Your credit card bill has everything a criminal needs to make purchases by telephone or on the Internet.


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