Consider a situation where someone you don’t know gets ahold of your personal data. What would you do? Identity theft is a problem that affects millions of American consumers each year. That’s why it is important to take steps to prevent becoming a victim, which can affect everything from your ability to take out a loan to even certain types of lawsuits or legal matters.
Thankfully, there are plenty of things you can do to keep an incident from occurring. Our team has put together this handy guide on identity theft with added tips on how to keep it from happening to you.
What is Identity Theft?
In order to decide how to protect yourself from identity theft, you first need to understand what it entails. Although there are hundreds of ways a person could steal your identity, there are twenty that are more common than others. This includes things such as taking out a credit card or mortgage in your name or using your social security number to apply for a job and avoiding paying income taxes.
To really put things into perspective, identity theft is technically any time someone uses your name, birthday, social security number, or other personally identifiable information for some sort of gain.
Millions of People Are at Risk for Identity Theft
You probably like to think your personal information is kept safe. Sadly, identity theft affects many people each year. Data breaches big and small happen almost weekly and to some of the biggest companies out there. Facebook, Capital One, and Home Depot have all had largely publicized issues in the last few years. Even Equifax—a leader in consumer credit information—has experienced a major breach of personal information.
What does this all mean? It’s likely that everyone’s personally identifiable information including their name, address, telephone number, and even social security number is available on the dark web for bad people to use. That’s why it is so important to take extra precautions to prevent this information from being utilized.
Tips for Preventing Identity Theft
The process of preventing identity theft might actually be easier than you think. While you can’t exactly keep your personal information from being stolen, you can take steps to ensure it isn’t being used.
For example, you can sign up for free or paid credit monitoring to help determine if someone is attempting to open a new account in your name. If you suspect an incident has occurred, you can also freeze your credit file. And always file a report with local law enforcement should you suspect a case of identity theft.
Identity Theft Insurance and How It Can Help You
Of course, there’s an added layer of protection you can choose if you’re concerned about having your identity stolen. Identity theft insurance helps protect you financially if your private information is taken and used in an improper manner. Unlike auto insurance, it doesn’t help with debt or the actual cost of the loss, but rather the amount it takes to help clear your name and credit profile. The annual premium for this type of coverage is incredibly affordable, and your local agent can easily help you understand the details.
While the thought of identity theft is quite frightening, there is a multitude of steps you can take to keep it from happening to you. By keeping a close eye on your credit profile, it is easy to spot if something is wrong or if someone is trying to take advantage of having your personal data,
Are you ready to learn more about protecting yourself from identity theft with specialized insurance coverage? Get in touch with our friendly and knowledgeable Feivor team today to schedule an appointment.