Protecting Your Mail From Id Theft

By Tina L Douglas

Identity theft is steadily on the rise and it is considered to be the top crimes that are on the rise in America. On the average, at least 10 million Americans are being victims of identity theft and the numbers are steadily rising.

We often take for granted our mailbox and what identity thieves can find inside. Rarely do people realize that identity thieves look at our inbox with gusto since mails contain a lot of personal information that can be used to steal another person’s identity. Every week, each mailbox receives pre-approved credit card applications, bank account statements, income tax returns and checks or checkbooks. Identity thieves who are looking for any valuable information can get hold of these mails and use it against you to drain your bank accounts and make huge purchases using your credit card information. Identity thieves can do a lot of things with the information that they can get from your inbox-apply for new credit cards, apply for a new phone service, direct TV or internet, apply for huge loans, withdraw from bank accounts and a whole lot more.

It is therefore important that we protect our mailbox from identity thieves so as to protect yourself also from identity theft. If you are quite unsure about how to do this, follow these defensive tips:

Any outgoing mail that you plan to send that contains valuable information should be mailed in the post office. Do not let it sit on your mailbox especially if you are fond of paying bills using checks. Identity thieves can use special solvents to erase the details of your check and use their names instead with the amount that they want to withdraw from your bank accounts. Leaving your check in your mailbox is like leaving the keys inside the car. You are simply allowing the thief to ride with it.

If you are going away and you cannot empty your mailbox everyday, then ask some of your trusted neighbors or friends to do it for you. Again, your mailbox contains very valuable information to be abandoned or neglected. Do not leave your mail overnight and as soon as it comes, empty it immediately before an identity theft criminal does.

If your post office requires you to drive miles before you can reach them, then have a mailbox installed that is made of heavy steel or at least those that requires a lock and key before you can collect whatever is inside. This is especially practical for people who put their mailboxes on the road side.

Opt out of mailing from various organizations or credit bureaus. This will significantly cut down the number of “pre-approved” credit car offers that you will receive, as well as car loans, and other items that may contain your personal information. Whenever you receive correspondences of this sort, make sure that you shred them before throwing them in the trash or better yet, burn them so that no one can access the information inside it.

Tina L. Douglas is a skilled writer from California. With numerous experiences in the field of writing for several financial institutions, she is greatly qualified across a variety of economic issues. Her notable pieces of writing involve how identity theft works and consumer credit protection.

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