Delray Beach, FL (PRWEB) September 10, 2010
In honor of National Grandparents Day on September 12, NationalCreditReport.com, a leader in credit report, credit score and credit monitoring services, reminds seniors to focus on preventing identity theft and encourages tech-savvy grandchildren to talk with their grandparents about smart ways to prevent identity theft.
“Unfortunately, seniors are viewed as an easy target for identity thieves for a variety of reasons,” said Samuel S. Ambrose, Vice President of Marketing and Operations of NationalCreditReport.com. “They often have very established credit histories, higher net worth and typically do not need to apply for loans or credit as frequently as their children or grandchildren do. Therefore, they don’t check their credit reports as often, are less likely to participate in credit monitoring services and don’t have the opportunity to notice fraudulent activity if they become a victim.”
“For seniors, there are several easy ways to prevent identity theft beginning with simply changing the way that they may have done things for years,” said Ambrose.
Ways to prevent identity theft - Smart Tips for Seniors:
- Don’t have your home phone number, social security number, driver’s license number, or date of birth printed on your checks. If this information is necessary, hand write the information at the time of the request and only provide it to trusted sources.
- Be cautious about who you let into your home. In addition to caregivers, seniors are also more likely to hire services to do tasks that they once might have done themselves such as home repair or cleaning.
- Shred all documents that are not necessary to keep and never throw them in the trash. Anything that needs to be retained should be kept in a locked file cabinet.
- Consider going paperless for bills and account statements. This is preventing identity theft by not having paper around to fall into the wrong hands.
- Participate in credit monitoring services. By registering for credit monitoring services you are being proactive in defending yourself against identify theft as well as staying well-informed about changes in your own credit. These e-mail alerts will be the first indication of a legitimate credit inquiry, credit discrepancy, and inaccuracies in your credit file or fraudulent activity within a credit file.
Ambrose notes in addition to more common forms of identity theft targeting seniors, ID theft from social networking is also becoming more prevalent. “Many seniors know the basics of protecting their identity, but many aren’t aware that ID theft from social networking even exists,” said Ambrose. “Many grandchildren have encouraged their grandparents to join social networking sites like Facebook so they can see photos and get updates on what’s happening in the family. There is also a responsibility here to remind seniors who may be less internet-savvy to set their privacy settings so they don’t become a victim of ID theft from social networking sites.”
As in all cases of a compromised identity, NationalCreditReport.com suggests participating in a credit monitoring service especially if you think you might be a victim of identity theft.
Since 2004, NationalCreditReport.com has specialized in providing credit information and credit monitoring services to consumers to help them understand their credit report and score. NationalCreditReport.com encourages consumers to check their credit report on a regular basis.