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Safe Shopping & Smart Shopping This Holiday Season

Take precautions so that you won’t have to spend $500 repairing the damage to your good name, the average amount consumers spend on identity theft restoration. Whether you’re hitting the mall or the send key, here’s tips to safe & smart shopping this holiday season.
At Home
  • If you’re not already monitoring your credit, get started. If someone tries to open an account in your name, or makes charges you didn’t authorize, you'll know about it.
  • Be discrete about leaving personal information around the house. In 16 percent of identity theft cases, the victim knew the person who had appropriated their personal information, and six percent of all victims identified them as a family member or relative!
  • Copy both sides of all your credit cards so that in case of loss, you'll have all of your account and phone numbers, and can contact card issuers quickly.
  • Scan credit card statements immediately for any unauthorized purchases. Tell the bank about anything you don’t recognize.
At the Mall
  • Don't be a walking wallet. Not only does carrying a lot of cash make you into a great payoff for pickpockets, but someone “shoulder surfing” can see your PIN at an ATM and then conveniently bump into you—and make off with your cash or your card. Avoid cash worries with a debit card.
  • Even better, consider credit cards. If someone steals your wallet, you can alert card issuers before you’re liable for the charges they might make.
  • Stay aware of your environment. Don’t be distracted by Santa or crying kids when you’re in the middle of a crowd.
  • Be selective about the identity documents you take. If you don’t plan on writing checks, you might be safer leaving your checkbook home.
  • Once you make purchases, safeguard receipts. They might contain credit card numbers or other identity details.
Now that you know more about safe shopping and smart shopping,
get your credit report & score.
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