About Me

United States
Belle is a mother of 2 beautiful teenagers aged 19 and 18 years old. She is originally from Bato, Catanduanes. She loves fiddling around with computer on her free time.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Security Tips to help prevent "Identity Theft".

I thought I would pass these valuable tips on to others.

  • The next time you order checks, have only your initials (jn place of your first name) put on them. If someone takes your checkbook, they will not know if you sign your checks with just your initials or your first name, but your bank will know how you sign your checks.
  • When accepting credit cards, it's important that the "back of the card is signed by the customer." Some credit cards are issued with a picture and signature of the customer laminated on the front. The signature policy is the same and the signature is still required on the back of the card. "Do not accept unsigned cards." If the card is unsigned, request a photo I.D. and have the customer sign the back of the card in your presence. This policy was established by the credit card companies and it is an added layer of security for merchants as well as customers if a dispute arises.
  • When you are writing checks to pay on your credit card accounts, do not put the complete account number on the memo line. Instead, just put the last four digits of your card. The credit card company knows the rest of the number, and anyone handling your check will not have access to the complete account number.
  • Put your work phone number and address on your checks instead of you home information. If you have a PO Box, use this for your address. Never, ever, put your Social Security Number on your checks.
  • Use the credit cards company's address as a return address on your payment envelope. If someone intercepts the payment, they will not have your home information.
  • Copy all of the contents of your wallet or purse on a photocopy machine. Copy both sides and you will have all the information needed to contact the individual companies in case of lost or theft. When traveling abroad, keep a copy of your passport with the paperwork.
  • When you check out of a hotel that uses card keys, do not turn in the keys. Destroy them. Many of those little cards carry on them all the information you used on check-in including address and credit card numbers. Someone with a card reader or any employee of the hotel can access all this information.
  • If your wallet, purse, credit cards, etc. are stolen, call to cancel the cards immediately. They are probably already being used. Next is to file a police report in the jurisdiction where the theft or loss took place. Lastly is to notify the three national credit reporting agencies and place a fraud alert on your name and Social Security Number. The alert means any company checking your credit will know of the stolen information and will have to contact your personally by phone to authorize new credit.
The phone numbers for the three agencies are:

Equifax: 1-800-525-6285
Experian: 1-800-397-3742
TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289

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