Speedairman.com Air Conditioning and Heating System Resources
Air COnditioning Heating System Articles Sitemap Resources Directory


Protect Yourself from Identity Theft

Thieves can use even the most simple of personal details to help them "verify" that they are someone they are not. A thief intent on committing identity theft will likely use one of the most common ways of obtaining personal details, "Dumpster Diving". This is surprisingly common in upper middle class and upper class neighborhoods and is spreading out cities into more rural areas; with 75% of local authorities now admitting it happens regularly in their area. An exercise carried out with the support of Nottingham City Council and Nottinghamshire Police analyzed the contents of hundreds of household garbage cans to see what people were throwing away. It found that 86% of domestic rubbish contained information helpful to criminal intent on identity theft.

Three quarters of the trash cans that were checked contained the full name and address of at least one person from the household, while 20% of trash cans contained a bank account number and sorting code that could be linked to the name and address of a person from the house. So please stop throwing your junk mail, such as credit card solicitations, into the everyday trash. Invest in a good quality shredder NOW!. This is the number one way to protect yourself from identity theft. Shredders can be purchased today for less than fifty dollars. Don't keep all of your bills, receipts and other personal documents in an obvious place, if you can lock it away.

If you don't have anywhere to lock it, try and keep it somewhere out of the way, or separate it out into different files and keep them in different cabinets. Another tactic is to cruise thru upscale neighborhoods and look for mailbox flags that are up, waiting for the Mailman to make a pick up. Thieves attempting identity theft will stop and raid your out-going mail, hoping that you slipped a check in one of your envelopes. Now they have your name, address, bank account numbers to the correct bank you use and. your signature.

Don't do it. Take a few extra minutes and drop your bills in a US Postal Service mailbox on the corner or in front of the post office itself. Most office buildings now have a secure mail drop in a lobby alcove that you can deposit your outgoing mail in. Identity thieves will also try to trick you into giving personal information either in person, over the phone or by using official sounding e-mails. And of course, personal computers can hold plenty of information useful to fraudsters. Don't let your PDA's or Blackberrys out of your sight.

If you use any blue-tooth enabled devises, you should take extra caution as to not keep important personal information, bank account numbers, passwords or banking information on them. Identity thieves have become experts at walking into a Starbucks, scanning the signals with a blue-tooth enabled device. When they lock on to a signal, they simply download your data and continue about their day. Later, they are free to access any personal information you had stored on your devise, hoping your were ignorant enough to place any of this information within their reach.

Be wary. Be suspicious of anyone seeking too much personal information, and don't be afraid to challenge them by asking "why do you need those details?" - A legitimate enquirer won't mind you asking, and will be able to explain why they need it. Make sure you store all important documents and details, such as your birth certificate, national insurance number, receipts and bank statements, in a safe place. Anything containing personal information that you intend to throw out should be destroyed before it is put into the trash can. Using a household paper shredder is not taking things too far. If you think you have become the victim of identity theft, report it to the police, local authorities, your credit card companies, your banks and relevant Government departments or companies immediately.

Keep personal information in "encrypted" folders on your computer. Encryption scrambles the contents of your chosen folder so it cannot be read by anyone else. You can "unscramble" the contents using a password.

Many well-known software companies offer free downloads to help you with encryption, or encryption can be an option under your standard operating system. Consider installing additional "personal firewall" software and password protection files on your computer to stop online intruders or "hackers" accessing information on your PC. They want your name, address, date of birth, mothers maiden name, social security number and any and all account numbers to any credit accounts and banks that you might have. Protect ALL of these as if your life depended on it.

Your financial life, just might. Copyright 2008 by Steve Phoenix.

Steve Phoenix is owner of www.pps-safety.net and www.best-home-security-tips.com where he writes on a variety of home, personal and self protection subjects. Steve Phoenix also owns www.pps-safety.com where he sells personal safety and self protection products.

Air Conditioners and Heating Systems

How to Deal With Asbestos - Most people hear the word 'asbestos' and immediately think of something very hazardous to one's health.

Furnishing a Spare Room - You have an extra room in your house and you'd like it to utilize the space for multiple purposes; a spare bedroom, an office, retreat and occasionally playroom.

The Labrador Retriever A Great Family Dog That is Friendly and Intelligent - If you are considering a pet, you will definitely want to take a close look into a Labrador retriever.

Give Yourself The Luxury Of Houseboat Living - Learn about houseboats all over the world and how houseboat living can be as luxurious as living in a palace.

Checking Your Toilet For Leaks - How to check your toilet for leaks.

© Copyright Speedairman.com All rights reserved.
Unauthorized duplication in part or whole strictly prohibited by international copyright law.