In 2017, 16.7 million people were victims of identity theft. The impact to those almost 17 million people was $16.8 billion.1
Many don’t realize identify theft is happening until it is too late and today, more than ever before, identity theft and fraud are on the rise. Because of this, it’s time to start being proactive against preventing fraud.
Monitor your accounts.
Monitor both your bank accounts and credit card accounts regularly. The sooner you spot irregular activity the better. Stay one step ahead of fraud and sign up for alerts from your bank or credit card company. Alerts are real time and can be sent straight to your phone.
Check your credit report.
Once a year the three major credit bureaus offer each consumer a free credit report. Take advantage of this!
Make sure your passwords are unique and not easy to hack. Not sure if your passwords are strong enough? Click here to find out.
Monitor your mail.
It’s hard to believe but your mailbox is prime pickings for thieves. Watch out for those preapproved credit card applications and if you’re putting outgoing mail in your mailbox, the trip to the post office could save you from getting a check to a creditor stolen. As a best practice shred anything that has personal information on it before throwing it in your trash.
Be smart on social media.
Watch what you share on social media. Placing personal information on these sites gives thieves the advantage. Don’t make it easier for them to steal your information. Use these tips to help ensure you are practicing safe social networking.
If you suspect that you have been a victim of credit card fraud or identity theft:
- Immediately contact the police and file a police report.
- Contact one of the three credit bureaus to place an alert on your account.
- Notify your credit card company.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.