Identity theft is something we hear about more and more, but what is it? Identity theft occurs when someone uses another person’s information without permission to commit fraud or other crimes. It really is that simple. More and more, our clients have called us asking how to protect against identity theft. Let’s first look at some scary facts.
- According to the Federal Trade Commission, around nine million US citizens have their identities stolen each year.
- Financial Institutions make up 35% of all data breaches.
- About 50% of the victims are between the ages of 18 and 49.
- Victims are 43% likelier to live in an affluent suburb.
- Federal authorities only apprehend 0.14% of identity theft criminals.
The facts above and more can be found on Identity theft: 8 shocking facts you need to know – CUInsight.
While there is no perfect solution to prevent you from becoming a victim, below are few action items you can do to mitigate the risk.
- Freeze your credit – this means no one, including you, can look at or request your credit report. When you do this with each of the three credit agencies, they will provide you a pin to stop the freeze so you can apply for future credit.
- Collect mail daily.
- Review your statements regularly, looking for irregularities.
- Shred sensitive documents before disposing of them.
- Create different passwords for your accounts.
- Sign up for identity theft protection. Below is a link to different companies that offer identity theft protection. Compare the Best ID Theft Protection Service of 2021 (top10.com)
The following link provided the ideas above and more to help. 10 Ways to Prevent Identity Theft | ID Theft Guide | U.S. News (usnews.com).
Our team at Quaker takes identity theft seriously and as an added protection for our clients we have cyber security protection. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact our office.