Identity Theft and the Holiday Season

Tips for Avoiding Identity Theft This December

Your risk of identity theft during the holidays goes through the roof, so to speak. Identity theft can occur any time of the year, but the busy holiday season puts consumers at a much greater risk for identity theft.

Presents Aren't The Only Thing In Abundance

There are a variety of ways identity theft can occur during the holidays. Because individuals are more generous during the holiday season, one possible concern related to identity theft is to be on the alert concerning possible charity scams. Another possible concern, in addition to the usual identity theft concerns, is shoulder surfing. The best advice during the holiday season is to be extra cautious so you can avoid identity theft.

More Criminals Arrested

Recently, according to KDKA, a news station in Pittsburgh, two individuals have been arrested on identity-theft related charges. The United States Postal Inspector’s Financial Crimes Task Force brought felony charges against the two individuals. As a result of these recent arrests, police are warning consumers to be extra careful.

One of the best recommendations law enforcement officials have offered is for consumers to get a copy of their credit report once the holiday season is over. They can review their credit reports to look for suspicious activity.

The Phone Isn't Friendly Anymore

It’s a good idea to avoid responding to phone solicitations for charities. Criminals sometimes pose as representatives of charitable organizations to commit identity theft. If you have specific charities that you like donating too, you can always seek out those charities. When you respond to a phone solicitation, you never really know who is at the other end of the phone. And it goes without saying, you should never give your social security number or other personal information over the phone to someone who calls you.

I’ve warned readers about shoulder surfing before. Basically, any time you shop this holiday season (or any time during the year), don’t reveal your credit card number. Keep your card covered and put it away immediately after using it. This will help you avoid identity theft.

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