Posts Tagged ‘protect against credit fraud’

How To Protect Against Credit Fraud And Identity Theft?

Many people these days are becoming victims of credit fraud and identity theft. Therefore, it is very important for you to learn how you can protect yourself against such risks. The TransUnion’s Fraud Victim Assistance Department has listed some of the most common factors that often result in identity theft and credit fraud. These factors include Domestic or elder abuse, Eavesdropping or wandering eyes, Dishonest employee, Database intrusion (credit card account numbers), Improper disposal of credit card statements and receipts, Lost or stolen purse or wallet, misrepresentation to obtain personal information usually through phone, Mail theft, Credit card skimming, Theft of employer or other multi-person records. Following is a brief rundown on some of the basic things that you must do to protect your credit against identity thieves.

Avail Subscription To A Credit Monitoring Service

A very common way of credit fraud is to apply for credit in someone else’s name. If someone has access to your crucial personal information, they may try to obtain credit in your name and then runaway with your money. If that happens, you may get an unpleasant surprise when you start getting calls from debt collection agents or the creditors. The best way to protect yourself against it is to subscribe to a credit monitoring service, where you will be notified of any such incident every time when a person applies for credit in your name. However, before you avail the subscription, make sure that you should not sign up with those companies that report monthly or weekly. The reports must be sent to you in real time so that you could get sufficient time to take actions against the possible identity theft.

Always Do A Thorough Review Of Credit Card Statements

In order to maximize protection against the possibilities of credit fraud and identity theft, you must also review your credit card statements every month thoroughly and very carefully. Make sure that the charges out there belong to you. If you notice that there is a mention of a new credit issued to you while you never applied for the same, you must immediately take necessary actions to stop further damage. For example, you can report the fraud to your company and request them to freeze your account.

Record Crucial Information

You are at the risk of identity theft if someone steals your wallet or purse. In order to protect yourself against any such unpleasant experiences, you are recommended to prepare a list of crucial details regarding every credit card you own, such as contact numbers of the credit card companies (issuers), expiration dates of the cards, and account numbers. Keep this list at a safe place so that you can use it in case your purse or wallet (with credit cards in it) is stolen. You can immediately call your credit card company and report the incident.

Shred Old Mails That Contain Your Personal Information

Many credit fraud thieves search for financial or personal details of potential victims while digging through trash cans. Therefore, before you dispose the old mails or other old documents that contain such crucial details, make sure you shred them thoroughly.

Protect Your Social Security Number

Identity thief criminals are always on a look out for social security numbers of their potential victims. Therefore, you must be very careful when you provide your SSN to someone; make sure you provide such crucial piece of information only to trusted companies or individuals. You are strongly recommended never to disclose your SSN details via emails or telephone. Besides that, it is also not a good idea to have your SSN printed on your checks.

If you follow the above mentioned five basic steps, you can definitely ensure optimum protection against credit fraud and identity theft.

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