5 Identity Theft Tips For The Holiday Season

A New Year's Resolution to Prevent Identity Theft

It seems that business really picks up around the holidays – and not just legitimate business either. Identity theft criminals seem to go into full swing this time of year. Just like the lighting of the tree at Rockefeller Center is ripe for pick pockets, the holiday season itself is an identity theft crook's dream come true. Here are 5 tips to keep you safe this holiday season.

1. Less is More

First and foremost, limit the number of credit cards you keep on you this time of year. One or two cards is plenty. You don't need to carry your entire collection with you while you do your Christmas shopping. If someone steals your purse or wallet, the impact of potential identity theft will be significantly reduced if you only have one or two credit cards in there.

2. Take Credit Monitoring a Step Further

Credit monitoring services like LifeLock are truly a lifesaver, but why not take it a step further with a service like ID Secure. This service keeps track of public records and fraudulent Internet websites, making sure your personal information isn't at risk.

3. Take Out Outgoing Mail

Do yourself a favor and take outgoing mail to the post office instead of putting it in your mailbox. If credit card statements sit in a street-side mailbox all day waiting for the postman to arrive, there's too much risk of them falling into the wrong hands and making you the next victim of identity theft.

4. Sign Checks With A Fraud-Proof Pen

There are many pens on the market that prevent check washing and identity theft. If you send out checks as gifts this holiday season, make sure you sign them with one of these pens. If the check ends up in the wrong hands, it won't put your bank account at risk.

5. Watch Your Credit Card Statements Closely

With all of the hustle and bustle of the season it's easy to let diligent statement review slide. Don't do it. Now more than ever you need to watch your credit card statements like a hawk.

Remember, the prevention of identity theft isn't just a 1-2-3 process. It's commitment to multiple actions and practices. This year let's make a resolution to do our best to prevent identity theft in 2008.

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