Provided by AARP Virginia
The first week of February is Identity Theft Awareness Week. It’s a good time to think about a sobering reality: your personal information has most likely already been stolen. Many entities have our personal information – credit card and bank account numbers, Social Security numbers, and health-related information – and data breaches have exposed it. So, what can we do to protect ourselves after the fact?
Here are three steps to protecting yourself against identity fraud.
- Place a security freeze on your credit accounts with the three main credit bureaus so no one can open a new credit line in your name;
- Establish online access to your financial accounts and monitor them regularly (you can typically set up text alerts for activity on these accounts);
- Use unique passwords for every online account; consider purchasing a password manager that creates complex passwords and stores them securely.
Be a fraud fighter! If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam.