Some good info for those that read my blog.
Unfortunately, the problem of identity theft is on the rise, a nationwide problem that has happened to thousands of people. The good news is, there are ways to protect yourself from this fraud and keep your credit and good name intact. It is unimaginable that someone could obtain enough personal information about you to actually purchase goods, obtain credit, loans even a mortgage all in your name.
1. Be watchful at ATM machines and make sure a “shoulder surfer” isn’t getting your PIN number to access your accounts.
2. Have your new set of checks delivered to your bank and pick them up there – don’t have them sent to your home.
3. Be aware there are “dumpster divers” out there. Shred all of your personal papers, bills and statements before throwing them away.
4. Do not put checks in the mail from your home mailbox. Drop them off at a secure U.S. mail drop or at the post office.
5. Do not put credit card account numbers on the Internet unless it is encrypted on a secured site.
6. Monitor your bank statements every month and make sure there are no unrecognizable charges. Alert the credit card company or bank immediately if you find a discrepancy, and have it investigated.
7. Order your credit report at least twice a year and review it carefully. Place a fraud alert on your report if anything appears that is questionable.
8. Empty your wallet of all extra credit cards and anything that bears your social security number. Do not carry any identifiers that you do not need.
9. Cancel all credit cards you do not use, or have not used in 6 months. Thieves can use these accounts easily… any open credit is a prime target.
10. Put passwords on all your accounts and do not use common references such as your dog’s name or mother’s maiden name. Use a made-up word that includes a set of numbers.
Thank you for reading this post. If I can ever be of help in finding you the perfect property here in the Napa Valley, please email me at Curtis@NapaValleyAddress.com
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire, selling Real Estate from its heart, Yountville
My website & blog: www.NapaValleyAddress.com