17th October 2017
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March 10th, 2017 Cat: Bisnis Online

Cheaper technology and the Internet have been a boon to identity theft scammers – people whose talents have colorful names like shoulder-surfing and dumpster diving. Someone who steals a credit card number in Cleveland can in two seconds send it over to his cohort in Russia to have it milked dry, and they can do this all day – anonymously. Ordinary people in America are reportedly under attack with an intensity that no other generation has experienced. Last year saw almost a million innocent folks skimmed and scammed in this way And identity theft protection, is as booming a business as, well, identity theft itself.

The rules of identity theft protection require that you know something about how these people operate; that way, it’ll come more naturally to you to not do the wrong thing. For instance, one of the worst things to lose is your social security card. When a lowlife gets his hands on that, he can quickly use it to open a bank account, and get a few credit cards in your name, no questions asked. And when things get a little crowded, he can just skip town right after he’s maxed out your cards.

Most people are very careful about their mail once they bring it home; but your mailbox is out there on the street. How long can it take someone to dip his hand into it? And if you like the convenience of mailing your checks for bill payments right from home, don’t. Those checks can be stolen this way. A basic rule to observe in identity theft protection is to never leave a paper trail. You know how people are, they get a credit card receipt at the store, or an ATM receipt, and just toss it in the garbage. You’d be surprised how many criminals pay good money to janitors for a chance to pick through the garbage they take out.

When your credit card bill arrives each month, it’s easy to just dismiss most of what is on it – especially when there is never anything worth noting even when you trace your finger over each line. But you do need to do this, and take notice of any charges for suspicious-looking purchases in places you don’t remember ever going to. You can dispute those, you know? And then you can cancel the card. Better still would be if you can muster the patience to join a service like Experian Credit Check to look at your credit report for any funny business. Identity theft protection is all about being defensive.

Having a bank or a financial service call you at home with a telemarketing offer, can be unpleasant for being a nuisance of course, but it is also possible that it could just be a con artist making a cold call and lying about representing some bank you go to. These days they go the extra mile and call you with a recorded message to sound extra authentic; the recorded message from the “bank” asks you to key in your PIN number or something, and there you go. No one can ever quite live it down once something like this happens, so simple and so unnecessary is it to go down for a scam like this. Most of these attacks are not really high-tech at all. Probably because most criminals don’t have the education to go high-tech. Just keeping our low-tech wits about us usually suffices.

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