Identity Theft and Phone Calls

Reduce Your Incoming Calls

One of the best and easiest ways you can reduce your risk of identity theft is to simply reduce the number of calls that you have coming into your home. Identity theft criminals sometimes commit their crimes after getting important and needed information from their victims over the phone.

New Tactics Every Day

There are so many tactics that identity theft criminals use to lure unsuspecting individuals to give out private information. You are much better off if you never have to talk to identity theft criminals because you will be less likely to slip up and reveal important information that you should not.

Screen Your Calls

One easy way to reduce your risk of identity theft by reducing the number of calls you receive is to get Caller ID. It is definitely worth the nominal monthly fee to have Caller ID. Basically, any time you get a phone call you can check your Caller ID first to see who is calling. You will probably want to ignore calls that say “unavailable” or “private.” If the call is very important, the person will usually leave a message. You can always return legitimate phone calls after listening to your answering machine or voice mail. If your state has a “do-no-call” list you will definitely want to get your number listed on that.

Get To The Point

It’s a good idea to always ask what the purpose of a phone call is before answering any questions. It’s certainly annoying to receive a phone call where the caller is talking very quickly and starts out by asking a bunch of questions, and this is one successful way that identity theft criminals can get information from their victims over the phone.

Be Alert

If you do answer a phone call and you aren’t sure if the call is legitimate, pay attention to the background. If you hear a dog barking or a child screeching in the background, it’s very doubtful it is your bank calling about a “problem” with your account or your local government office calling to tell you that you failed to report for jury duty. The bottom line for avoiding becoming the victim of identity theft over the phone is to never give your social security number, credit card number, or bank account information to someone that calls you first, and you’re less likely to fall into this trap if you reduce the number of phone calls you take.

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