10 TIPS TO HELP PREVENT IDENTITY THEFT
The two words Identity Theft are horrible and traumatic to many people. There is no exact definition about Identity theft. It occurs when someone uses another person’s personal information like their name, date of birth, credit card number, identifying numbers without their permission.
Basically they do this thing to commit fraud or other crimes. This term was coined in 1964 throughout the both UK and USA. Frauds are draining investment, like bank balance, insurance, child loan fund and they also doing many types of illegal crime to use this method.
This problem is growing most in this pandemic situation. Internet service is holding most important role in disseminating information about identity theft. Day by day the threat of identity theft is increasing, not only in USA or UK also in many of countries. Shocking number of incident is happening everyday regarding Identity theft.
What is identity theft ?
Identity theft is when someone basically stranger is using another person’s personal information like name, identifying number, social security number and accounts number for unlawful purpose. The criminal uses public’s sensitive data to pose them or steal from them.
The thieves may drain bank or investment account , open new credit lines , steal tax refund , take medical insurance information to take treatment facilities get utility service and when they are arrested they give the name of identity holders name . Now internet service makes this process too easy.
Frequent data breaches through internet hacking means information already exposed. So it’s getting easy to use personal information and ruin financial life.
Types of Identity Theft
There are different types of identity thieves. We can detect the fraudulent crime go through the explained observation process.
When frauds are stealing junk mail, they get much personal or official information through mail. Credit card bills, tax return information, bank details and official details.
Thieves are using email and messages to trap people into offering their PII. Phishing emails and messages may contain attachment which is specially designed to steal PII or links to fraudulent websites where people are prompted to enter their information.
Fraud are using another person’s identity like identity proof, address and others personal information to misguide the police for their criminal offence.
In this case frauds are using personal information to get the medical insurance benefits. This is most dangerous thing because here make the huge chances of mixing up the medical profile and get wrong treatment.
In this situation when victim fills out the personal data on a form, enters pass code on a keypad or provides the credit card number over the telephone number.
10 way of Prevent Identity Theft
No one can get sure about fraudulent until it happens to them. But people can maintain some precautions for prevent the identity theft.
Lock your credit/debit card
First of all keep your card in secure place. If anyone lost his/her credit or debit card make sure that lock the card immediately, and go to the police station and launch a FIR. After freezing your card then apply for a new card but don’t renew the previous card.
Use complicated password
Identity thieves are always looking for our password. They try to assume our password using our personal information like name, date of birth, phone no, using random number which are using by many of people to make easy to remember. So make your password complicated with using mixed up content like alphabet, number, @, #,*. Always keep changing your password.
Be alert to phishing
Scammer can make phone calls appear to come from, government entities or business and email that will make possible to legitimate may be attempts to steal your information. Try to avoid this type or call or emails. Never call back or reply their mail.
Safe guard social security number
Social security number is the master key of personal data. So, don’t try copying them in any note pad, phone or anything else. Don’t carry your card or anything which is containing social security number. Securely share or store your paper work containing your social security number.
Check your credit reports
Check your credit card report regularly. Credit card reports are available free of cost to consumer. Make sure any accounts in forbearance or deferment are being reported properly watch for signs of fraud.
Shield your devices
Mobile, laptop and tab can be a real risk. Lock your device properly. According to Javelin’s report only 48% of us routinely lock our mobile devices. Use banking app rather than using mobile browser for banking.
Use alerts, many of financial institutions will text or email when transactions are made. Sign up so that you know when or where your credit cards are used.
Click with cautions
Observe financial or medical statements
Observe your financial or medical bill statement. Make sure that you recognize every single transaction. Investigate if you don’t receive expected bill. Want explanation for any benefits statements to make sure that recognize the services provided to guard against health care fraud.
Stop pre-approved credit offers
Stop most pre-approved credit card offers. They just make a trap to steal your personal information. After that your name will be removed from credit bureau marketing list.
Be careful and ask question
Don’t throw out any bank statements, credit card bill or anything related your personal information in the garbage. Don’t afraid when any business agency or any institution asks for your personal information. Ask how it will be asked, how it will be shared and how it will be protected. Explain to them that you are concern about identity theft.
It will become easy if we can mark which documents are exposing identifying data or personal information then we can protect our personal information.
If you are a victim of identity theft, then take the help of identity theft protection services, they let you know that our identifying information has been used or it is at risk because it was exposed in a data breach. They may also help if you are a victim to reimburse you for cost through process of cleaning up the mess and restoring identity data.
Also Read – Royal Sundaram General Insurance