What would you do if someone stole your private information? Would you know how to handle the situation? Are you already taking steps to prevent this type of event from personally occurring? Unfortunately, identity theft is a real problem, and this type of situation happens to millions of people each year.
The exact problems related to identity theft can mean a diminished credit score, inability to purchase a home, or even legal ramifications. Thankfully, there are a few steps you can take to keep this from happening to you. Here’s some basic information you need to know to help protect yourself from identity theft.
What is ID Theft?
Before we discuss protecting yourself from identity theft, we need to first talk about what it entails. Technically, identity theft includes over twenty different types of instances where someone besides you assumes your likeness or financial profile with the intent of gain. This can be something as simple as stealing your mail or applying for a credit card in your name.
However, identity theft also covers a wide range of other situations. Stealing the name or social security number of a child to take out credit or applying for a job with your name and financial information to keep from paying income tax is also considered a various type of theft.
Your Identity is Not Safe
While you probably already take steps to keep your identity from being stolen, it is important to understand that your identity is not safe no matter how hard you try. Data breaches happen all the time and it’s likely that your personally identifiable information is already on the dark web for use by some really bad people.
Financial organizations like Capital One and Equifax have all recently encountered data breaches. So have platforms like Facebook, where it is estimated that thousands of accounts were accessed without permission. This is why it’s paramount to take extra precautions when it comes to preventing the use of your personal details.
What You Can Do to Prevent ID Theft
Of course, there are always extra steps you can take to help prevent a data breach from turning into a major case of identity theft. Sign up for credit monitoring at your local financial institution or through one of the major credit bureaus. Take advantage of your free yearly credit report to look for any discrepancies or issues and report them immediately. If you feel there’s been an incident, you can also freeze your credit to prevent any unauthorized use. And, if you notice someone has used your information, file a report with local authorities.
What is ID Theft Insurance?
Almost everyone knows the importance of car insurance, but few realize there’s a separate kind of policy designed to help protect you in the event of identity theft. This type of coverage doesn’t include expenses of the exact loss but can help you with related fees associated with clearing your name and any associated debt. The cost for this type of coverage is incredibly affordable and your agent can help you decide whether it’s worthwhile to add to your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy or if you need something bigger.
The thought of having your identity stolen is frightening. Not only can it keep you from maintaining a good credit profile, but it can also drag you into a ton of false debt and even legal trouble. However, keeping the various tips mentioned above in mind, you can help prevent it from happening to you.
Interested in learning more about ID theft insurance? Contact our Franquist Insurance Agency team today to schedule your no-obligation coverage review.