What could be more frustrating than having someone rob you of who you are? This is a crime called identity theft and is very common in this century. Since 2007, many have been victims of this crime where the sufferer loses an average of $5,720. Around $49.3 billion dollars were illegally gotten via identity theft. For you to be spared from this, you should always practice caution and avail of identity protection.
The Federal Trade Commission defines identity theft as someone using another person's personal information such as a name, driver's license, credit card, currency, checks and social security number without that person's knowledge and permission. Every year, nine million Americans fall into this trap. The criminal will get such information through skimming, pre-texting and phishing. He can also retrieve such data by out rightly stealing this in the victim's house or personal belongings.
Because this is a rampant crime, you need to defend yourself from it. When you avail of identity protection, you will be sure that one will have a hard time stealing what is yours. This is the action you do so as to aggressively safeguard your identity.
Identity theft usually happens electronically aside from other means such as the thief entering your house and rummaging through your things. In order to protect yourself, you can burn all documents that have your personal information such as student application loan forms, credit card offers, receipt of paid utility bills and bank letters. Ideally, you should keep your financial information in the past seven years in a secure place as advised by the Internal Revenue Service. Those that are beyond seven years must be burned or shredded completely. You should also remove other letters from your mailbox that contain any useful information that will make others rob you of your identity.
Identity theft is done electronically. Because of the presence of the Internet, malicious individuals retrieve important data about people. Computers are hacked and information can then be stolen. It is therefore important to install anti-spyware software, antivirus and firewalls in computers for protection purposes. When you buy products over the Internet, make sure that the website is a reputable one.
Identity theft has other forms aside from physical theft and electronic theft. This is pre-texting where you will be encouraged to reveal your personal information. When you use your credit card, you are actually revealing information about your account. It is thus important to ensure that you get your copy of the receipt released by the credit card for future reference and protection. You should thus enroll or avail of an identity protection service so as not to be victimized by unscrupulous people. When you avail of this, your identity will be protected via means of verification and ongoing electronic ways.
To look for such a service, go online and start your search there for identity protection. You will see many websites promoting this service but always choose the reputable one by asking people you know about it.