Identity Theft. No longer if, but when!

Identity theft is quickly becoming the most common crime these days.  With the advances in technology today, the risk is increasing exponentially.

Identity theft is the fastest growing crime.

You hear about Identity Theft incidents virtually every day.  Just go to Google News and key in Identity Theft.  I had 43,300 results!  One of the articles indicates the likelihood of thousands of potential victims.  I highly recommend reading “The Canadian Guide to Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft and Other Fraud” by Graham McWaters and Gary Ford.  In that book, they cover some of the things you can do to protect yourself.

Smart Phones and Identity Theft

Think about this.  Just recently there was an article entitled “City of London orders Renew to stop tracking citizens with it’s trash cans“.  There is technology now that allows companies to track your smart phone as it passes by.  The article indicates that the program collects the MAC address of your device which then allows them to know what time you were in a particular area.  A MAC address is unique to your device.  There is no other device in the world with the same MAC address.  Talk about opportunity for identity theft!

For people of habit, this means that someone will eventually figure out a way to tap into this and know when you aren’t home!  It’s not a stretch of the imagination to believe that someone will figure out how to use this data to get into your phone and collect more about you.  Do you have your address programmed into your phone?  How many others are at risk of identity theft because you have their name, address and phone number in your address book?

What is worth more to you?

There are apps now that you can use to find your lost smartphone or tablet.  If you have them installed on your device, you can track it and you also have the ability to lock and wipe remotely.  That’s great!  You got your phone back or at least wiped the data.  But, did you do it in time?!

By the time you noticed your device was missing, someone could have got into your phone, downloaded all the contacts and personal data and be well on their way to either selling your identity or committing God knows what kind of frauds in your name.  Yet one more victim of identity theft.

What is worth more to you?  Your device or your identity?

What can I do?

It’s no longer if, but when you will become a victim of identity theft.  You can take precautions like:

  • Never keep your key pieces of ID in one place. (Driver’s license, birth certificate, passport, and so on.  Keep them separate.
  • Change your passwords regularly.
  • Don’t use personal identifiers as passwords (birthdays etc.).

Regardless of how cautious we are, it’s likely that at some time we will become a victim of identity theft in some form or another.  Let’s just pray it’s not medical and results in death!

Do you realize it can take up to 600 hours to restore your identity to pre-theft condition?  Can you afford to take that time off work?

Identity theft affects millions of North Americans each year. LegalShield offers a high quality identity theft plan. Best of all, this plan provides Comprehensive Identity Restoration from Kroll Advisory Solutions. So in the unfortunate event something does happen to your identity, you’ll have professional help in getting your identity restored to what it was before the fraud occurred.

Identity Theft, no longer if, but when.

Make it a great day,

Barry

P.S.  What am I thankful for today?  I’m thankful for my LegalShield membership.  I’m thankful we can help so many people.  I’m thankful for Kroll!

What are you thankful for today?