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Saturday, October 08, 2005

Tips to Battle Identity Theft

TIP 1
CHECK UP ON YOURSELF REGULARLY

Get a copy of your credit report every year from each of the major credit bureaus (TransUnion, Equifax, Experian) to make sure the records are accurate.

TIP 2
TRAVEL LIGHT

Avoid carrying around credit card or personal documents unless you really need them.

TIP 3
KEEP PERSONAL DATA UNDER WRAPS

Don’t share personal ID numbers with anyone. Don’t provide information over the phone or hand over personal data unless you know it is needed. Keep a list of all account numbers in a secure place so that you have quick access if cards or documents get stolen or lost.

TIP 4
BUY A SHREDDER FOR THE HOME

Tear up or shred all credit card receipts and all new card offers that arrive in mail. Also destroy all documents that contain account numbers or other personal financial information.

TIP 5
CHECK THE MAIL

Don’t let mail sit in the mailbox for days on end. And don’t place sensitive outgoing mail, such as bills, in your home mailbox to await collection. Instead, drop it in a collection box.

Sources: Federal Trade Commission, American Bankers Association

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