How to Protect Against Identity Theft | Equifax®

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Highlights:

  • It may not be possible to completely protect yourself against identity theft, but there are steps you can take to help protect your personal information
  • There are free tools that can help you better restrict access to your credit reports
  • Keeping Social Security cards at home, getting a locked mailbox and being careful what you share on social media are a few easy ways to help better protect yourself from identity theft

identity thieves are constantly looking for new ways to obtain personal and fiscal information such as credit card or Social Security numbers. Whether they use tactics such as stealing your wallet or sophisticate phishing emails online, it can be hard to stay argus-eyed .
While it may not be potential to prevent identity larceny wholly, it can help to educate yourself about the risks and take steps to help safeguard your data.

hera are some habits to consider adopting to help protect personal data :
How to Help Protect Personal Information Offline 
Secure your information. Consider limiting the documents and cards you carry when possible, including your Social Security card. Cross-shred documents containing personal or sensitive data, including bank and credit rating wag statements and old credit cards .
If you are asked to provide your Social Security number ( or your child ’ second Social Security number ), ask why it is needed and how it will be stored. You might want to ask if you could share the last four digits of the numeral alternatively of the integral number to help protect personal data .
Learn about steps you can take regarding your credit reports. There are two exempt tools you can use to help guard against the open of fresh credit accounts in your name. A security freeze restricts access to your credit reports for the purposes of opening new accounts, and must be lifted or removed if you ‘re applying for credit. A fraud alert encourages lenders and creditors to take extra steps to confirm your identity before issuing credit .
Review your financial statements and credit reports regularly. On your fiscal and bank account statements, you ’ ll want to ensure every transaction listed is accurate. The lapp is true for your credit reports – you want to make surely your information is accurate and arrant. In summation, regularly reviewing these can help detect fishy bodily process that may signal imposter or identity larceny. You can file a quarrel if you see information that is inaccurate, incomplete or that you do n’t recognize. At Equifax, you can file a dispute by creating a myEquifax account. Visit our dispute page to learn other ways you can submit a quarrel.

You are entitled to a free transcript of your credit reports every 12 months from the three countrywide recognition agency — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com. You can besides create a myEquifax acccount and get six loose Equifax citation reports each year .
Learn about different types of fraud and identity theft, a well as the steps you can take to help protect against them .
Keep an eye on your mail. Mail larceny is one way that identity thieves can use to gain entree to your information. If you are out of town, consider having your mail held at the post function. You can besides purchase a locking mailbox or economic rent a post function box. note that locking mailboxes must conform to U.S. Postal Service regulations .
How to Help Protect Your Information Online 
Consider practicing good cybersecurity habits. Don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate contribution or recycle passwords. Learn about the practice of “ phishing ” and how to recognize when an electronic mail or early message may not be legitimate .
Secure your devices. Be wary of connecting to public WiFi networks. Remember that even if a network requires a password, it may not be secure. If you are traveling or use public WiFi frequently, consider a virtual private network ( VPN ). Keep your devices locked and password-protected, and ensure that antivirus software on your computer is updated and current.

Talk about Internet safety with your children. No matter their age, kids can be taught the basics about on-line guard. You may want to set rules around information that can ’ thymine be shared on-line. Remember, children can be victims of identity larceny excessively .
Don’t overshare on social media. Use privacy controls so information like your give birth date, your employer or your family members isn ’ metric ton publicly accessible .
Fraud and identity larceny can happen to anyone. It ’ mho crucial to stay cautious when it comes to helping protect your personal information and fiscal details, and learn about steps you can take if you suspect you are a victim .

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