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Identity Fraud – How To Protect Yourself…

June 2nd 2015
By: Melanie

Identity fraud is big business, and this year we have seen a rise in identity fraud victims in the UK. New technology is being developed so that we can use retina recognition instead of pin numbers to access our money, but as this is still under development, it could be sometime until we are able to benefit from the new system on the high street. So here are a few ways in which you can protect yourself from being a victim of identity fraud:

 At home:

• Lock away your personal files and financial documents

• Destroy prescription labels on boxes before you throwing them out

• Don’t over share on Social Networking sites and never give away your full name, bank account number etc.

• Protect your post, make sure that you destroy your name and address on envelope labels and shred or burn any paperwork which has your name on it before throwing it away.

• If one of your utility bills arrives late or doesn’t arrive at all, it could mean that someone has taken it to use the information, so make sure you report it to the utility company.  

• Never give out personal information over the phone, especially if you haven’t instigated the phone call.

• Pin and pass codes – make sure you memorise all of your pass codes, and don’t keep a record of these in your home.

• Make sure that you only use sites which display the lock logo or Https when entering any payment information or private information

Check your credit report regularly

At work:

• Try and take as little as possible to work in terms of personal information

• If you share a computer then make sure you do not store your pass codes on that computer for any social media accounts, on-line banking and other sites which could be hacked.

• Lock away your wallet in a draw or locker

Withdrawing money:

• Always make sure that you conceal your pin number

• Never give your pin number to anyone else

• If you notice something suspicious about an ATM then make sure you don’t use it.

Reporting Identity fraud

If you do find that you are a victim of identity fraud then you will need to inform the police, keep track of all of your correspondence concerning the fraud – all communication, times and so fourth.

Contact CIFAs – the UK’s organisation for tackling identity theft

Freeze your accounts – contact all of your creditors, banks and phone companies to report the theft. They will then be able to issue you with new account information.