How To Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

identity theftIdentity theft is a serious issue that is plaguing the world as increasing number of people around the world are falling prey to this crime. It is estimated that around 12 million Americans on an average every year have their identity stolen without them even having a trace. What makes this crime is so elusive is the fact that it takes place virtually. This issue is even more common among the elderly and senior citizens because they tend to be more disconnected from the technology world and are not aware of scams, risks, and other hazards that exist in the online world.

Signs of an identity theft are not easy to recognize, and this is why people must take proper pre-emptive measures to protect their assets and critical information from being stolen.

Few uncommon consequences of identity theft

Leaving aside the typical effects of stolen credit card information on bank accounts, here are some of the ways in which identity theft can impact your life.

1. Damage your job prospects: Employers now take a careful look at a prospective employee’s credit history before hiring them. Even though no law mandates that you must have a good credit rating to get a new job, employers can use this information against you and present it as an excuse for not hiring.

2. Wrongly introduce a criminal record: Criminal identity theft is a serious problem that doesn’t involve your money or credit history. If a criminal gets arrested while they were using your driving license or name during any fraudulent transaction, it is you who may have to pay the price for someone else’s crime.

3. Kill your identity: There have been many cases where criminals who stole the identity of others decided to register themselves as dead to run away from creditors. If your identity is stolen and you are registered dead, you may have to withstand a lot of mental pressure and deal with a lot of paperwork for cleaning up the mess.

4. Get you a fraudulent tax bill: A form of stealing identity known as SSN-only theft involves making use of the victim’s social security number in multiple job applications, commonly to fulfill status requirements for governmental residency. If the impostor fails to pay the taxes that they owe, the Internal Revenue Service will come knocking at your doorsteps, and it will be up to you to prove how you didn’t fail to pay taxes.

What can you do to secure identity?

There are many ways you can secure your identity and even reduce some of the impacts of the consequences mentioned above. The first thing you can do is be aware of ongoing scams or fraud that are duping people of their hard earned assets. Also, you’ll need to make an extra effort to keep your bank account secure and regularly change passwords so that no one can steal it from you.  It’s also recommended to visit http://www.idtheftauthority.com/reviews/ and see which credit monitoring services are ranked #1.  By checking your credit card report at least once a year, you can detect any signs of fraud by simply noticing errors in bills and accounts that aren’t yours.