Identity theft is a risk that continues to grow and change daily. Due to the many forms identity theft can take, including medical, credit, and financial, the threat remains prevalent and affects millions of people every year. Keeping up-to-date with the latest prevention methods is the surest way to protect your assets and identity.
Here are a number of steps you can take to reduce the risk of identity theft happening to you:
Reduce Access to your Personal Information
- If asked for your Social Security number, be sure to inquire why it is needed and how it will be protected.
- Do not provide your Social Security number to online job websites or over the phone.
- Do not share personal information on social media sites or online profiles.
Eliminate Unwanted Credit Solicitations
- Opt out of pre-screened credit card applications.
- Register for the National Do Not Call Registry.
- Ask your credit card companies to cease sending convenience checks.
Do Not Respond to Emails Requesting Personal Information
- "Phishing" is a technique used by criminals to solicit your personal data by sending what appears to be a legitimate email request from a recognized source, including banks, credit card companies or social networking sites.
- Be suspicious of any email that asks for sensitive personal information, even if the sender is familiar to you.
Monitor your Financial Records
- Review your credit card and bank statements each month and refute any unauthorized charges within 30 - 60 days.
- Use passwords that are not easily guessed and do not share them with anyone.
- Purchase anti-virus and firewall protection for your computers.
Check Your Credit Report Regularly
- You can get a free annual copy of your report from all three credit reporting agencies at www.annualcreditreport.com.
- Experts recommend that you check your credit report at least every 90 days.
For more information, contact your HUB International Risk Services consultant.
Click here to download HUB's Identity Theft and Cyber Security checklist for more tips on how to protect your personal information.