#1 You can’t protect yourself from identity theft.
Some, not all Identity theft is preventable. There are many things people can do to minimize their risk, both online and offline. Shred anything that has names and account numbers or any other data that can be used to con someone else into divulging even more information. Keep financial records protected and private in a locking file cabinet at home or protected PC. Opt out of junk mail. Invest in an identity theft protection service and get a credit freeze.
#2 Identity theft is only a financial crime.
There is also medical identity theft when someone poses as you to get medical attention, criminal identity theft when the thief commits crimes under your identity. There is also employment fraud when they use your SSN to get a job and identity cloning when the thief is simply trying to evade the law or others by posing as you in plain sight.
#3 Technology and computers are why identity theft is so big.
Certainly data breaches are responsible for some identity theft. However, low tech identity theft is the bigger problem. A lost or stolen wallet, checkbook, or a debit or credit card handed over to a clerk or information tossed in the trash are all the most prevalent ways your identity is jacked.
#4 Caller ID is safe.
Caller IDs are easily spoofed with technology that allows the bad guy to change what shows up on your handset. First, no matter who calls, never giver personal information over the phone if you stand to gain or lose something or if the caller states your data was lost in a computer crash. Always use the phonebook or look up the number online and call them back.
#5 Checking your credit report protects you from identity theft.
I’ve always though thought this was silly advice. Checking your credit report just tells you if your identity has been stolen. But you should still check your credit report as often as possible. Some identity theft protection services let you check it every day. I’d check it monthly if you have the option.
Robert Siciliano personal security expert to Home Security Source discussing identity theft on YouTube. Disclosures.
About the Author
ROBERT SICILIANO, CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com is fiercely committed to informing, educating, and empowering Americans so they can be protected from violence and crime in the physical and virtual worlds. His "tell it like it is" style is sought after by major media outlets, executives in the C-Suite of leading corporations, meeting planners, and community leaders to get the straight talk they need to stay safe in a world in which physical and virtual crime is commonplace. Siciliano is accessible, real, professional, and ready to weigh in and comment at a moment's notice on breaking news.
- Identity Theft Myths Part 1of3 During PYIW
Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano
The National Foundation for Credit Counselors, which sponsors Protect Your Identity Week, has compiled a number of identity theft myths. To support their efforts, the Santa Fe Group Vendor Council Awareness and Education Subcommittee has helped to clarify some common misinformation with regards to this increasingly common crime.
Myth #1: There’s no
- Medical Identity Theft: Ins and Outs
Medical identity theft is the deadliest form of identity theft—and I say this without hyperbole or exaggeration. When financial gain is the general motivation for stealing medical information, insurance cards, records, etc., the crime is a form of account takeover fraud. Medical identity theft—the real kind—occurs when the thief’s motivation is obtaining medical procedures or
- The Scourge of Medical Identity Theft
Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
Medical identity theft can make you sick. As I once eloquently explained on CBS’s Early Show, if medical identity theft happens to you, “you’re screwed.” And it’s true.
Medical identity theft occurs when the perpetrator uses your name and, in some cases, other aspects of your identity, such as insurance information, to obtain medical
- Caller ID Spoofing Effective in Identity Theft
Caller ID spoofing is when a telephone’s caller ID displays a number that does not belong to the person calling. The telephone network is tricked into displaying this spoofed number as a result of flaws in caller ID technology. Caller ID spoofing can look like the call is coming from any phone number. People inherently trust
- Identity Theft Myths Part 2of3 During PYIW
Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano
The National Foundation for Credit Counselors, which sponsors Protect Your Identity Week, has compiled a number of identity theft myths. To support their efforts, the Santa Fe Group Vendor Council Awareness and Education Subcommittee has helped to clarify some common misinformation with regards to this increasingly common crime. We’ve already discussed
Leave a Comment
You must be logged in to post a comment.