This is a sponsored brand ambassador post with Find Your Influence and LifeLock. All opinions 100% my own
Thieves are all around us, just waiting for that break to steal our personal information to use it without our permission. It is alarming to think that in 2012 alone, there were 12.6 million victims of identity fraud in the U.S! Those victims had their social security numbers, email, debit or credit cards, health information, banking information, driver’s license and so much more wrongly stolen from them. I was one of those identity theft victims when my debit card information was compromised when we visited a local establishment here.
Trust me when I say the process of recovering funds and worse who you are is not a simple task. There are many steps you can take to help protect your identity from thieves, in hopes that you never become a victim of identity theft.
- Shred: I don’t care if it is junk mail with your name, shred everything you do not want or old documents that no longer need to be saved. Those credit card and mortgage offers that arrive in the mail have special codes that are associated to you. If someone gets that they can easily pretend they are you calling to get that new credit card or mortgage. Shred every single piece of mail, do not throw in the trash.
- Lock up your Social Security Card: When I was younger, I carried my card in my wallet. If my purse/wallet were ever stolen, that would be the end of my name. Keep yours and your entire families social security cards in a locked safe. Only take out when necessary and be sure to place it back in the safe the moment you get home.
- Check bank and credit card statements immediately: With online banking we are able to see 24 hours a day what is going on with our bank or credit card accounts, but if you are still one to get paper statements, make sure you are checking each and every transaction as soon as the statement arrives. If anything looks suspicious contact your institution immediately.
- Keep your computer updated: This includes updating your password monthly to something strong containing upper and lower case letters, numerals and characters. Never use birthdays, social security numbers, addresses, phone numbers or your name. Also, keep your antivirus up-to-date.
- Check your credit report on a regular basis: You can check to make sure there are no unauthorized credit applications, confirm your address (current and previous) are correct, and ensure there are no other inaccuracies that could hurt your credit. Credit monitoring is not proactive identity theft protection, you need an identity theft protection service that is proactive in monitoring identity and credit.
- Invest in Proactive Identity Theft Protection Services: LifeLock is a company I have been using now for almost 18 months as they continually monitor my identity and credit. They offer services to help keep your identity and personal information safe. LifeLock monitors 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Signing up to LifeLock is the most important thing you can do for yourself to have your information proactively monitored. But they do more than just monitor your credit. They give you peace of mind -scanning for threats and responding when there is a threat. Best of all they guarantee their services! LifeLock works relentlessly to protect your identity so you can live life free in an always-connected world.
Use coupon code LifeLockSafety to receive 10% off LifeLock services. Learn more at the LifeLock Site.
Do you have a tip to help safeguard your identity?