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    Who Is Watching You?

    Tammy Johnston

    Criminals are lazy scum. If they had ambition and brains they would be out creating something rather than being dirt bags that leach off of the efforts of others. Identity Thieves like easy targets, and here are some simple ways to cover your ass.

    Guard your personal information. Take a lesson from the British and keep your mouth shut. Information you don’t blab can’t be easily stolen.

    Don’t leave personal information unattended. Take your purse or wallet with you at all times. It only takes a moment to photograph credit cards, driver’s licenses, and other identification. Don’t give thieves the opportunity.

    Shred personal information. If it has your name on it, SHRED IT! Dumpster diving is a popular sport for Identity Thieves. Don’t leave them the gems they are looking for.

    Keep your SIN to yourself. There are only three people / agencies that need your SIN: your bank, your employer, and your financial advisor because they all have to report financial activities to the government. Anyone else asks you for your SIN the answer is NO!

    Protect your credit and debit cards. Make sure if you give your credit card to a clerk or waiter / waitress that you get your card back. When using debit put in a false PIN code. If it says approved, leave and call the police.

    Be aware of billing cycles or missing mail. Identity Thieves have been known to intercept and steal mail that contains personal and financial information.

    Cover the keypad when entering your PIN. Cell phones have cameras and video. Protect your space and your privacy whenever you use an ATM of debit machine.

    Use difficult passwords. If it is easy to guess, someone will. And please don’t make the mistake of writing them down. Murphy Law lets you know that will be found and used against you.

    Hang Up on Telephone Solicitors. If you didn’t phone them, why in the world would you give them ANY personal or financial information?

    Check your credit reports. If there is stuff on the reports that aren’t yours, get them corrected immediately. Also look into who has been making inquiries into your credit.

    “Distrust and caution are the parents of security.”
    Benjamin Franklin

    The MONEY® Network