To minimize your risk for identity theft requires diligence. Examine your daily routine to determine if you are doing all you can to keep your personal, financial, and confidential information personal. Just as with any crime, there is no guarantee that identity theft won’t strike, but if you are alert and evaluate each request for personal information, you can reduce the risk. Following are links to information to help you develop a plan of action to protect your personal identifying information. Resources are also provided so you know what do if you or someone you know becomes a victim of identity theft.
The key to minimizing your risk for identity theft is to have a plan of action.
You can control how your personal and financial information is used by companies who send you mail, e-mail, or call you on the phone. To safeguard against the misuse of information, you can reduce unsolicited sales pitches, control the number of credit offers you receive by mail, remove your name from mailing lists, and report unsolicited spam.
Medical identity theft occurs when someone uses your medical information without your knowledge or consent to get medical treatment, buy prescription drugs, or submit bills in your name for nonexistent medical treatment or services. Not only does the misuse of medical information have financial consequences, but it can be hazardous to your health if information belonging to a thief ends up in your medical records. Consider the following preventive actions to reduce the ill effects of medical identity theft:
Before you shred, review the information from the IRS to get general guidelines, and review tips when to keep or shred documents that have personal, financial, and confidential information.
Be alert for online scammers that send thousands of unsolicited e-mails, hackers who use the Internet to access computers without permission, viruses that spread from computer to computer and damage files and systems, and identity thieves that send pop-up messages to “phish” for personal information.
We have provided some steps to take to begin your recovery from Identity Theft.
Additional resources and information are available to view on different Web sites.