DENVER, CO (PRWEB) February 3, 2006
Identity theft, one of the fastest-growing and most invasive crimes in our country, now touches the lives of one in five consumers. It rips away its victims' security, shakes their confidence and, worst of all, leaves them psychologically and financially paralyzed.
InsureMe, the leading online insurance source connecting shoppers and providers, wants to help consumers protect their "personally identifiable information" (PII) and avoid this senseless crime.
The company recommends keeping personal information safe by:
- Replacing paper bills, statements and checks with Internet or paperless versions through an electronic bill pay service
- Retrieving paper mail promptly, and taking outgoing checks or other sensitive documents to a U.S. Postal Service mailbox
- Withholding information until its use, security and distribution can be determined
- Updating computer firewall and anti-virus software regularly
- Keeping passwords private and changing them frequently
- Requesting that the post office hold mail during vacations
- Shredding all private documents containing PII before discarding them
- Keeping Social Security cards in a safe, secure location such as a safe deposit box or locked filing cabinet, rather than a purse or wallet
- Being wary of promotional scams used to collect PII, especially by email
- Ordering and reviewing copies of credit reports from all three major credit bureaus at least once yearly
The average identity theft includes a casualty of almost $4,000 in fraudulent charges and about 81 hours spent in issue resolution. This creates even more complications in the loss of jobs, loans, houses, cars and future financial opportunities.
So play it safe, get educated—and practice caution when sharing personal information.
InsureMe, an Englewood, Colorado-based company, links agents nationwide with consumers shopping for insurance. Specializing in auto, home, life, long-term care and health insurance quotes, the InsureMe network provides thousands of agents with insurance leads every year. For more information, visit http://www.InsureMe.com.