BE STRONG AGAINST IDENTITY THEFT

Tips and Tricks to Save Yourself from IT

Computers

· Monitor your credit accounts carefully, so you'll know if a bill's missing or unauthorized purchases have been made. Close out unused credit cards. Cutting them up is not enough.

· Limit downloads from websites you don't know. This can keep a virus from invading your computer, saving your personal information from intruders. It also helps to block outrageous popups.

· Update your antivirus and spyware detection tools frequently. Install a firewall program to protect your home computer network. When you are not using your computer, make sure to turn it off.

· Avoid banking by email. You should never respond to email from what you think are financial institutions. Some phishing emails do a great job of mimicking the look and feel of companies you may trust. If you need to communicate with your financial institution, go directly to their website and use the secure login.

· Take care when shopping online. Purchasing items online potentially carries a similar risk. When shopping online, make sure the cite you are using is legitimate to make sure it is approved as secure, especially before divulging credit card information.

· Remember where you are. If you are out and about and accessing a public Internet connection, don't send any sensitive information. Save your banking, shopping, and the like for a secure network you trust.

Paperwork

· Don't carry your essentials. Make sure that the information you have one you is not an extremely essential; such as a passport, social security card and/or your birth certificate.

· Shred. Use a paper shredder to destroy any papers that may carry sensitive information prior discarding them.

· Be wary of phone callers. If you feel as if the person on the phone might be scamming you, do NOT give them important personal information.

· Be watchful of shoulder-surfers. At ATMs and phone booths, thieves will stand close enough to see PIN numbers punched in by users.

· Mind credit card receipts. Especially since only a few credit card receipts have stopped listing full account numbers and expiration dates

· Write clearly on all credit applications. Consistently and completely fill in all credit and loan applications using your full name, first, middle and last. Every bill that comes to your house should be addressed exactly the same.

· Limit the number of credit cards you carry. The fewer cards you have, the easier it is to track them.

· Get a credit report at least once a year and clean up any errors. Look for personal information and credit accounts that are not yours. Credit bureaus make mistakes.

· Never leave paid bills in your mailbox for the mail carrier to pick up. Drop them off at a post office box.

· If you're moving, contact all your creditors and update them of your address changes immediately. You don't want credit information and new credit cards being delivered to the wrong address. Likewise, if your credit card expires and you don't receive a new one, call your creditor immediately.

There are some things you can do when encountering IT

  1. Put a fraud alert on your credit report by contacting one of the three consumer reporting agencies. Having a fraud alert on your credit report means you will be contacted for authorization before any new accounts can be opened in your name or any changes can be made to your existing accounts.
  2. Close the account(s) you believe have been tampered with. You should cut off the identity thieves as soon as possible.
  3. Contact the police and file a report. Identity theft is a serious crime, and you should contact the authorities to report the crime.
  4. File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC works with the police in matters of identity thefts. Filing a report with the FTC also helps the government better track and respond to identity thievery.

Information From :


Huff Post Buisness, Tips for safeguarding your identity, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-sanjay-jain-md/tips-for-safeguarding-you_b_4789633.html

Bankrate, 15 must-know tips for protecting your identity, http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/cc/20020612a.asp

Technology Support Center, What to do if you're a victim of identity theft, http://helpdesk.illinoisstate.edu/kb/1086/What_to_do_if_you_re_a_victim_of_identity_theft/