As we are now in the full swing of the holiday season where things are hectic and fun and sometimes a bit stressful, it becomes increasingly easy to simply let our guard down. However, in a season full of heightened activity and distraction, this time of year is well primed for identity thieves who look to take advantage while your attention is focused elsewhere.
While businesses certainly have a set of best practices they follow to protect against the loss of private consumer data, individual consumers themselves often fail to exercise practical habits to secure their own information…especially during this season of goodwill.
This month, we have included some practical tips on how to keep your information safe and to protect the spirit of the holidays as a season for giving…not taking!
1) Use your credit card instead of checks or a debit card.
When you use either of the latter forms of payment, the money is drawn directly from your bank account. If fraud does occur, it's more difficult to get the money reimbursed.
2) Leave your purse at home.
For women, lighten the load of a shopping trip by taking a wallet instead of the large catch all. It's much easier to steal a purse than a wallet.
3) Watch your statements.
Most forms of identity theft can be caught simply by frequently monitoring your checking, debit, and credit card accounts. Remember, the faster you catch an identity thief, the less harm they will incur on your banking accounts.
4) Try an identity monitoring service.
If you feel at high risk for identity theft, then hiring a monitoring service to keep a sharp eye on your accounts may be the best plan of action.
We hope you find these tips helpful, and as always, our team at COPS Paper Shredding is there to assist with your secure document and hard drive destruction needs. We know that your security matters!
Thanks for reading, and we hope you have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!