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Preventive Credit Card Identity Theft Lessons

Nick Makaryk
Jul 18, 2008
Unfortunately, identity theft is becoming much more common these days. People get their credit cards and more stolen, only later to be faced with charges they never made. Sometimes, this can result in a bad credit history through no fault of your own. Because identity theft is becoming increasingly widespread, it's something you need to be aware of so that you can prevent it, and know what you need to do if you do become a victim of it so as to avoid further financial trouble.

If someone asks you for your personal information, make sure you know why they want it and that they are above board. In general, the best policy is to only give your personal information out to people you have contacted specifically, such as your bank or financial institution, for specific matters. If someone calls you cold, don't give your financial information out, no matter how good a particular offer sounds.

Whenever possible, don't carry your credit cards with you, or carry just one. Shred bank statements and other sensitive financial information before you throw it out. If someone gets hold of bank statements or credit card statements, that person can use that information to cause damage before you ever find out about the theft. So keep a close watch on financial things you must carry with you, such as checkbooks, credit cards, and other financial needs that can nonetheless give an identity thief a windfall.

If your financial information does get stolen, make sure you have a list of your credit cards written down somewhere along with a credit card numbers so that you can content companies right away so as to cancel those accounts. Don't keep this information in the same place as you do credit cards, because this only makes it useless. Calling credit card companies right away once you know your credit cards have been stolen will make it possible for them to freeze your credit card account so that thieves cannot use your credit cards for unauthorized purchases.

In addition, make sure that you order a copy of your credit report each year, from each of the three major bureaus. In this way, you will be able to tell whether there have been any suspicious charges you're not responsible for.

Again, shred anything you have to throw out that's financially sensitive. Otherwise, thieves can very easily go through your trash and find out just what they need to know to steal your identity from you.
About the Author
Nick Makaryk is an Internet Publisher, Copywriter, and Founder of Best Credit Cards A Free consumer Credit Card Comparison site helps consumer minded individuals find the perfect credit card while avoiding high interest rates, charges, and no fees. Compare all Low Interest Credit Cards from accredited card issuers Visa, Master Cards, Discover, American Express.
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