Identity Theft Protection

Identity theft protection can be simple if you know how to do it. But just because it is simple doesn't mean it is unimportant.

You wouldnt go driving down the highway during rush hour with a blindfold on, would you? Hopefully not (and if you do, please let me know what roads you drive on). If you do not take the steps necessary for identity theft protection, thats basically the same as driving blindfolded. Dont think identity theft can never happen to you because you are too well educated or too poor. Identity theft can happen to anybody from all walks of life.

According to The Presidents Identity Theft Task Force, about 10 million Americans become victims of identity theft a year. The good news is you can take steps for identity theft protectionfor free and by using your common sense.

Obtain You Credit Report Obtaining your annual credit report is probably one of the best things that you can do for yourself. You can obtain these free credit reports yearly from Equifax, Transunion or Experian. You can also go on line to Annual Credit Report This will enable you to see if there are any disputable transactions your accounts may have or if a loan has been taken out in your name. The earlier you can find a discrepancy, the earlier you can try to fix it.

Keeping track of your monthly credit card or bank statements is a must for determining any questionable entries.

Stay Alert Your driver?s license, Social Security card and laptop are as valuable as any cash you might have to someone looking for information. Keep them with you at all times when you are not at home. Leaving them unattended even in a locked car is not an option.

Emails Seeking Information If you get an email looking for personal information such as account numbers or passwords that you think may be from your bank, it?s likely that it isn?t really your bank emailing you but someone looking to gather information. These emails can be made to look as realistic as needed in order to seem legitimate. The best thing that you can do is not even respond to these messages. But if you happen to realize after the fact that you have replied to one of these sites mimicking another such as eBay, contact eBay immediately and change your password and freeze your account. Hopefully nothing will happen other than learning a valuable lesson in identity theft protection.

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"A man in debt is so far a slave,"
Ralph Waldo Emerson.

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