Most people understand that identity theft can lead to lost money and may lower your credit score. But how can you figure out when you’re at risk, and what can you do to prevent complications? From routine online sweeps to investing in an insurance policy, the following tips will help keep your identity safe.
What Are Some Types of Identity Theft?
One of the most common forms of identity theft is financial, in which a person illegally accesses and uses your funds. Signs of this include unexplained purchases, suspicious log-ins to your online banking, and unexpected changes to your credit score.
Another type of identity theft has to do with your social security number. In this case, the thief uses your personal information to falsify documents, take out loans, or open accounts.
Someone might also access your driver’s license, with troubling results. For example, they might take out insurance claims or use your information to get out of legal trouble.
What Can You Do to Protect Against Identity Theft?
First, talk to your insurance agent about adding identity theft coverage to your policy. In many cases, this is offered as an add-on to homeowners or renters insurance.
Once this is set up, keep an eye on your accounts. Start by doing a monthly online credit score check. Free websites like Credit Karma® or Credit Sesame® will give you a free breakdown of your credit history, as well as an overview of any recently opened accounts.
You should also change your online passwords once every three months. Avoid using generic formulas like your pet’s name or the street you grew up on, as these are the easiest to hack. Finally, keep your driver’s license on you at all times, and lock your social security card in a safe at home.
For more protection from identity theft, turn to the professionals at Western States Insurance Group in Lovington, NM. They’re proud to offer an extensive range of customizable insurance policies designed to keep you and your loved ones safe. Visit them online to learn more about their coverage options, and call (575) 396-1318 to discuss your needs with a team member today.