It's unbelievably frustrating, here you are going about your business, being a productive member of society, caring for your family and some lazy thief is trying hard to steal your identity and all you've worked so hard for. The good news is that there are identity theft solutions so you can work to stop the thieves in their tracks.
- Many people used to think it was a sign of pride that their wallet was brimming over with credit cards, the more gold or platinum cards the better. Today, though, we know that more isn't merrier. It's a real risk to carry your cards with you so you will be doing yourself a favor by only carrying what you absolutely need.
I don't even carry my cards on a day to day basis, I only put one in my wallet when I know I'm going shopping, that's good identity theft solutions.
- Keep careful tabs on your credit report. By law you are entitled to one free report from each of the credit bureaus every year. If you divide that up to one a quarter you can keep a good eye on your credit report.
Of course, if you find anything that looks off, make sure to call the credit bureau right away. I have a friend who just got a bill from a company he has never dealt with before. He contacted the company right away since he suspected someone had used his identity.
- More and more people are realizing that it's foolish to sign the back of a credit card. Sure, it says that we should but think about it for a minute: if a thief wants to forge your signature, aren't you making it easier for them by writing it out.
Instead of signing your cards write "See photo ID" or something similar on the back of the card. That is much better protection for you than signing your name.
- Only use one card for purchases made online. Even better, use an online payment source like Paypal. Instead of having several of your credit card numbers floating around in cyber space you can greatly limit your exposure by using only one card or relying on Paypal.
- Make sure you get your mail as soon after it's delivered as possible. Leaving mail in your mail box can be an invitation to thieves to steal it and use that information to steal your identity.
- Make sure that you also look over your bank statements and credit card statements every month. This is the best way to spot a problem quickly. If you see anything that looks off contact the bank or credit card company right away.