Did you know that anyone can be a target for identity theft, at any age? The first step in preventing it from happening to your family is to understand how thieves try and intercept your information to begin with.
Your mail and recycling are two of the most common sources of identity theft. Not only will identity thieves steal mail that might contain valuable personal information, they can use that information to fraudulently order a redirection of your future mail.
Think carefully about the contents of the documents you toss in your recycling, especially if you live in a multi-unit building where recycling is centralized and out in the open. If those documents contain personal information about you, your family, business clients-anyone-it's valuable to an identity thief.
Quick Tips for Preventing Identity Theft:
* Never throw away bank records or other documents in a readable form- shred them instead.
* Never give your credit card number over the telephone unless you make the call.
* Never share your PIN, online banking access codes or other passwords with anyone.
* Review your bank account and credit card activity regularly.
* Reconcile your statements as soon as you receive them so you can notify your bank or lender of discrepancies immediately.
* Follow up with the post office if you do not receive mail you were expecting or have an unusual lapse in receiving mail.
* Ensure your mailboxes are secure, especially if you live in a multi-unit building.
For more information, visit Consumer Protection BC at: www.consumerprotectionbc.ca/consumers-alias/help-for-how-can-we-help/243-identity-theft
Government Communications and Public Engagement Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General 250 356-6961
Connect with the Province of B.C. at: www.gov.bc.ca/connect