Identity Theft FAQ for Canadians

Identity Theft Canada >> How to Prevent Identity Theft

How to Prevent Identity Theft

An identity theft takes place when someone tries to use your personal identification in order to acquire access to services, loans, mortgages, and rentals, for example. Such a negative experience may be overwhelming if you happen to be the victim. You may not notice that the act has happened for a long period of time, even months or years. Here, we suggest some protective measures to follow which. However, they cannot guarantee that a non-cautious credit grantor will abstain from giving access to your credit form to criminals. Stealing private information can be accomplished in many possible ways. Anyone with access to your personal information or social security number may do so. Many public offices share your information. These include, but are not limited to, your doctor, lawyer, health insurance official, law officer, the courts, and the school system. A person who is employed by these institutions or employers can steal identity. To become an identity theft victim, you don’t need to lose your wallet.

    The tips for identity theft prevention include:

  • Buying a cross-cut type shredder is a good idea which comes as a cost effective decision. The devise can be obtained for as little as $60-$70. It is wise to shed the credit applications that have been pre-approved and similar data which provides access to your financial information. Don’t leave even your credit card receipts.
  • Don’t dispose casually of anything that could be used by a third party to impersonate you. Have in mind the “Dumpster diving” technique. Instead of throwing away pieces of paper, including information that identifies you, shred it.
  • Take care of the ATM’s. “Shoulder surfers” may memorize your PIN in order to gain an account access.
  • Let all your checks be delivered to your bank, instead to your home address.
  • Do not use your home mailbox to put checks in. Send them to a Canadian Post Office. To steal mail isn’t a hard thing to do: changing the name of the recipient can be accomplished with the use of an acid wash.
  • Keep track of your calendar and note when it is time to order a new credit card or the previous one is due to expire. If on a certain date the new card is not received, you should call the card granter (as soon as possible) and find out what the problem is. If a billing statement or a card does not arrive on time, find out if the problem involves a change of address.
  • All credit cards, not used within the past six months, should be cancelled. Open credit is an open invitation for the thieves, and they use such cards with ease.
  • Instead of using the maiden name of your mother, try a fictitious word. Protect with passwords all accounts of yours.
  • Use a locked mailbox, if possible.
  • Inform yourself of the way the financial institutions deal with your private information. Ensure it is protected in a proper manner: any redundant or unnecessary information should be shred. Inform them of the necessity to do so.
  • Social security numbers and extra credit cards should not stay handily in your wallet.

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