Ways to Protect Yourself from Identity TheftSubmitted by Integrity Capital on April 4th, 2018
Most people assume that they will not end up as the victims of identity theft. However, one of the gravest issues with identity theft is that it is hard to make a full recovery after the damage has already been done. Therefore, it is best to take action to ensure that you are maximizing your security to prevent identity theft. If you are concerned about the safety of your finances and credit score, or are simply interested in learning ways to protect yourself from identity theft, read this collection of tips from Integrity Capital.
First, it is necessary to explain what identity theft actually is, given that the definition and prevalence of this crime has evolved as a result of new digital platforms. Identity theft is when your personal information is stolen to access all of the resources available to you. By retrieving all of these pieces of information, they are able to access your financial accounts, compromise your credit score, and even take advantage of your health care plan. Even if you are not currently protecting your sensitive information from the threat of identity theft, there is no better time to start than the present.
You can begin with simple steps to protect your name and accounts and then gradually increase the security measures you take towards preventing identity theft. The easiest thing you can do is to strengthen all of your online passwords. Most websites that ask for your personal information require you to have a password that includes case sensitive letters, numbers, and some form of a symbol. However, make sure that you aren’t using the same password for multiple websites and that you are not storing a list of those passwords in an online portal that can be easily accessed by hackers. This directly relates to the information you share online, which can also be a way to reduce your risk for identity theft. Be aware of security questions that you answer and the information you are putting on the web or social media because you don’t want to be sharing information that leads to your finances, even if it may seem harmless to you.
In terms of physical measures you can take, make sure that you have a shredder available to you for all bills and other papers that may contain sensitive information. Don’t throw things such as bank statements, medical bills, or even credit card offers in the trash because it is simple for those to provide identity thieves with possible access to your resources. By shredding all of your materials that contain personal information, you are significantly reducing your risk for identity theft. Even if it doesn’t seem like it could be directly linked to your account, it is better to be safe than sorry.
Other measures include familiarizing yourself with the patterns of identity theft, setting up alerts on your account, and monitoring your accounts and finances. Although many financial institutions have measures in place for these situations, you are the best tool for preventing identity theft. For more information to help you stay on top of your finances, contact Integrity Capital. We are located in Covington, Kentucky and serve Florence, Kentucky, Cincinnati, Ohio and the entire region of Northern Kentucky.