Tips for Avoiding Fraud and Identity Theft

Tips for Avoiding Fraud and Identity Theft

Don’t Let Identity Theft Ruin Your Life — Do This To Protect Yourself

( – Identity theft occurs when someone steals another person’s identity and uses it fraudulently. The issue is incredibly prevalent and damaging. It’s important for every person to be aware of the potential that it could happen to them so he can take steps to help prevent it. Here’s a look at some tips anyone can use to safeguard against identity fraud.

Protect Your Social Security Number

A Social Security number (SSN) is the unique identifier for every American. Typically assigned at birth, the SSN becomes a way to track and maintain information about a person, including credit. If someone can get ahold of your SSN, they have access to your whole life and can pretend to be you.

To safeguard a SSN, keep cards in a secured location and never share the number with untrusted sources. If someone requests it, always get full details on the use and storage. There are more useful tips to safeguarding your social security card found on

Use Security Software

With people using mobile devices and the Internet regularly, securing devices is essential. Security software can block hackers, protect users from dangerous websites, detect malware and spyware and more. All devices connecting to the Internet should have some type of security suite installed for protection.

Shred Documents

When you’re finished with documents and old cards, your first instinct might be to simply throw them in the garbage. But in many cases, you’re better off avoiding disposing of sensitive documents in the regular trash. Anyone can come along, grab those items and use the information on them to steal your identity. The best way to prevent issues is to run all documents containing personal information through a shredder.

Choose Secure Passwords

The problem with passwords is they need to be memorable, but they also must be difficult for a stranger to guess. Choosing a secure password can be challenging, but a few tricks can make it easier.

A secure password should:

  • Not contain personal information
  • Be at least 12 characters long
  • Use a variety of numbers, letters and symbols

Another important guideline is avoid reusing passwords. Using unique passwords for all your accounts is the safer way to go.

Know the Signs of a Phishing Scam

Identity thieves typically use the same approach repeatedly to steal identities. They will pretend to be trusted sources. To avoid falling for them, always double-check senders’ emails and don’t click through links in an email. Instead, go to the site through your bookmarks or by typing the address in your browser. If you are still unsure, you can also learn more about how to recognize phishing scams here.

Identity theft can be difficult to combat once it happens — and while prevention is the best way to avoid becoming a victim, there’s no guaranteed method to securing your information in today’s increasingly digitized world. However, you can still take steps to protect yourself with these tips. Stay safe out there!

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