Identity theft has unfortunately become a common occurrence throughout California and the United States due to an ever-increasing number of ways for a thief to steal valuable personal information. At the Law Offices of Howard D. Silver, we are dedicated to helping victims repair what has been damaged by identity theft. However, prevention is the best step in keeping one’s credit, bank accounts, and reputation safe. To keep yourself as safe as possible, understand these important factors in identity theft protection provided by MarketWatch.com.
- Always keep your purse or wallet with you to prevent them from being easily stolen.
- Keep the least amount of personal information possible with you. Leave Social Security cards, birth certificates, and check books at home, preferably in a locked safe, to prevent theft.
- Do not give your personal information out via phone or email, as this is the number one means of theft for Social Security Insurance.
- Carefully inspect your monthly bank statements and immediately report anything suspicious to the bank.
- Use your three free credit reports throughout the year to check for discrepancies and issue an identity theft credit freeze if needed. Each of the three nationwide consumer reporting companies – Experian, Transunion, and Equifax – are required to give one free credit report every 12 months.
- Use a credit monitoring service to alert you of changes in credit reports.
- Carry as few credit and debit cards as possible, and keep careful track of them.
- Be aware and cautious when using your PIN number so as to keep it from being seen or stolen.
- If gone during the day, have a trusted neighbor collect your mail if your mailbox is easily accessible to strangers.
- Shred all documents with personal information before throwing them away.
While these methods can prevent many instances of I.D. theft, such crimes are not completely preventable. If you have been the victim of such theft, Ventura identity theft attorney Howard D. Silver can help mitigate your losses. For more information, call (855) 341-2611.