You know your identity – your looks, your hobbies, your profession – you may not think too much about protecting it from theft. But the truth is that there are many dishonest people out there who would love to steal your identity. Their theft has nothing to do with copying your hairstyle though, it is about stealing your money, your reputation, and your ability to borrow. You make sure that your possessions are secure, but you also need to ensure that your identity is, and identity theft protection companies can help.
There is much that you can do on your own to help protect your identity. First, you can be careful with your personal information and not give your social security number out unless absolutely necessary. When someone asks for your social security number, ask why they need it and what it will be used for. If you are not convinced, insist that they accept another number. Shred all documents and papers before your throw them away. Also, be careful here you use your credit and debit cards. Readers such as ATMs and gas pumps can be compromised using devices called skimmers to store your card information.
Regardless of how careful you are with your information, you will have to give it away at some point. Most likely to a doctor’s office, an insurance company, or your employer. Look into how the information is stored. If your boss keeps everyone’s personal information in an unlocked file cabinet, maybe suggest a more secure alternative.
As for the big companies claiming to use state-of-art security on all of the electronic data that they have stored, mass data breaches have shown us that even these cannot be fully trusted. This is why fraud protection companies are essential. While fraud protection companies cannot stop all identity theft from happening, they can alert you to certain types of activity and help you to take action to minimize damage. Fraud protection companies work by monitoring your credit report for these changes. The longer the theft goes one, the more difficult is it to dispute the accounts and get your credit reports cleaned up; using fraud protection companies allows you to take action immediately.