Privacy Problems

12 Ways to Thwart ID Theft

More than 16.6 million people fell victim to identity theft in 2012 and lost a total of $24.7 billion, the Bureau of Justice Statistics says. If you don’t want to be one of them, prevention is simpler – and cheaper – than is a cure. Here are a dozen ways to help do that.

How to Prevent ID Theft

With technology come the cyber criminals who steal your identity, credit card numbers and bank account information. While you can’t eliminate all identity theft threats, you can reduce the risk with extra precautions.

Safeguarding Your Digital Info

What happens to all your online accounts when you pass away? In this age where we manage all financial matters online, a digital control plan with a list of accounts and passwords saves your loved ones unnecessary hassles.

My best friend died two years ago. I still miss him. We had a mutual pact. I had a sealed envelope and an encrypted hard drive in my friend’s gun safe eight miles away from my home office. He had a sealed envelope in my safe in my garage.

Stopping Tax-Related ID Theft

Identity theft is rampant. You can become a victim not only after carelessly using passwords and your personal information but also if you’re in the wrong electronic place at the wrong time, such during Target stores’ data breach last holiday season. You have little information more sensitive than that you write – and sometimes send electronically – on your tax return.

Managing Your Passwords

We maintain online accounts for essentially everything – banking, investments, shopping, email and the list goes on. As much of this information is private and sensitive, you must take online security and password protection seriously.

Avoiding Tax Scams, ID Theft

Did the Internal Revenue Service reject your tax return? Maybe you screwed up. Maybe too someone else filed using your Social Security number (SSN) – a mushrooming scam you now must guard against.

Protecting From ID Theft

Leave your laptop unlocked, toss a bill full of sensitive financial info into the trash un-shredded, even just hit the submit button when using your credit card to buy online: You can stumble into the identity-theft trap at any time. Protecting yourself means making basic security steps a habit.

Protecting Against ID Theft

You shop, you swipe your card, you leave the store. Here’s what to know if your card information gets into the wrong hands.

Beware Scams at Tax Time

Identity theft runs rampant during tax season. Here’s what to know and how to protect yourself.

Identity thieves often swipe your bank or credit card account numbers, birth date information or Social Security Number (SSN) to steal from your accounts, open a new and phony account or make illegal purchases. In 2013, 13.1 million consumers suffered identity fraud – the second highest level on record, according to a survey by Javelin Strategy & Research.

How to Store Critical Info

Most of us make lists for groceries and weekend chores. Few write what’s likely the most important list of our lives and here’s what to put on it.

Call it a life book: a notebook – or just a piece of paper – containing pertinent information your loved one must know to take care of you or your family if you suffer a serious accident, illness, emergency or death.

To see the value, ask yourself how to answer these questions if something happens to your spouse or to another close family member:

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