|AVOID IDENTITY THEFT THIS HOLIDAY SEASON|
|Posted on: Nov. 20, 2017 in Identity Theft|
Black Friday and its online counterpart, Cyber Monday, are coming up, which means more and more consumers will be shopping both in stores and online than at any other time during the year. While you’re out buying gifts for loved ones, identity thieves are at the ready to steal what’s yours. Keeping tabs on your credit and debit cards is an easy way to protect yourself while buying in person, it can be a little harder to know how to protect yourself online.
Is Identity Theft Serious?
Some crimes are relatively minor. Someone might go on a shopping spree with your credit card information. Often, the card issuer has fraud protections in place to stop this early and the spending stops fairly quickly. Also, you’re likely not going to be held responsible for these charges. But they are indeed a hassle and can tie up your available spending limit or take actual cash from your account in the case of a debit card.
However, major incidents are also unfortunately common. An identity thief can do some major damage to your credit, ruining your credit score and making day-to-day life a hassle. When your credit score tanks, it can be harder to get a loan when you need it. What’s more, your credit is often a factor for determining insurance rates, getting a job, or getting an apartment. Thieves can also use your information to get health care, file tax returns in your name, get cell phones and other utilities, or even commit crimes, putting you at risk for arrest.
What Can You Do?
Protect your identity this season with these tips:
Using common sense can go a long way toward protecting your identity and, ultimately, your credit score. Don’t take unnecessary risks because you found the best deal ever. And if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. Make smart choices – it’s better to be safe than sorry!
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