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Tips For Avoiding Identity Theft

  1. Don't carry your social security card/number in your wallet or pocketbook.
  2. It's the 21st Century. Get your driver's license number and phone number off of your checks. A little inconvenience to pull out your driver's license when you cash a check is much better than having your license number floating around all over the place.
  3. Always keep a close eye on your credit card accounts. With online banking resources, this is easy to do on a daily basis. At the first inkling of something that looks a bit off, call your financial institution.
  4. Get a shredder, or at least tear up all junk mail that comes into your house. If you don't have a shredder, make sure you tear through your name and address on the solicitation or other junk.
  5. Before you throw your empty prescription bottles away, tear off the part of the label with your personal info (name, address, phone, script number).
  6. When someone calls you regarding "updating your directory information" or other personal information, first ask who is calling. A lot of times these are spammers just looking to verify your info so they can sell your info to another company. Be especially careful about this if the number on your caller ID is "Unavailable" or 1-800-000-0000.
  7. Speaking of the telephone, be particularly vigilant regarding any calls asking for information or making special offers. We periodically get calls from a company posing as our telephone company who is offering to give us a special deal on our services. The idea is to get us to verbally commit to changing our service, not realizing what they are trying to get us to do is switch our service to theirs.
  8. If someone knocks on your door saying they are offering a special on cleaning carpets or some other deal, close the door, lock it, and call the police.

More About Identity Theft