Did you know the social security administration has issued over 450 million numbers? Protecting your number is the best way to protect your identity. Last year alone 18 million Americans fell victim to identity theft. That’s nearly one in every 145 people. You may wonder why does it matter to me if my identity stolen. What difference does it make?
Well there’s a lot of things that people can use your identity for somebody out there, can open up a credit card account using your information, they can file a fraudulent tax return or they could sell your data to someone else, is going to do even more damage with it believe it or not if they got arrested, there could be a warrant for your arrest. So what can you do to protect yourself?
There are three things that you can do.
- Go to ftc gov site to get a copy of your free credit report.
- Protest any fraudulent accounts that you find on that credit bureau profile and
- Place a credit freeze with whatever company you choose to protect yourself from anyone else opening up an account using your social security number.
A lot of people wonder what a credit freeze is. I cannot emphasize enough how important the credit freeze is to protect yourself contrary to what people might think it is not freezing your credit. It freezes your credit bureau profile and prevents anyone from opening up an account using your information. The number one place thieves steal your identity is from a doctor’s office when you fill out an application only the last four digits of your social security number or what’s needed for processing the insurance claim.
A lot of times these will break into your car to steal your information. One thing you can do to protect yourself is not keep your registration and your insurance card in your glove box. If you want to either put them in your wallet or snap a picture and keep a picture that in your phone, if you need them wait till the day before your trash is going to be collected to put it out. People will take your personal information from your trash to open up accounts using your information. For added protection shred any documents containing your personal information. By following these simple steps you’ll be able to protect yourself from becoming the victim of identity theft.