Thursday, March 5, 2015

Do I Need ID Theft Protection?

While it my not seem like it is necessary to add more layers of protection to your online presence, carefully considering the alternative may make you change your mind. Utilizing services that provide identity theft protection can make it more difficult for thieves to access the important aspects of your identity, leading to fewer instances of theft and much less stress for you in the long run. Sure, you don't absolutely have to use these methods of protection, but the following information may make you more inclined to choose to.

How Do Thieves Access My Information?

There are many different methods that identity thieves use to reach their goals. These include hacking, intercepting mail, petty theft and even in some cases simple luck. While old fashioned robbery may result in a thief obtaining things like a driver's license, keys and physical credit cards, it is often the online theft that can do much more damage. Most people will file police reports and close credit cards as soon as they are taken because they are aware that it is happening - people whose information is compromised online may not always know right away, which can lead to prolonged misuse by thieves and a great deal of debt and sleuthing that must be done in order to repair the damage. Once a thief has accessed the parts of your life that they are after, things only become worse for you, the victim.

What Happens After My Information is Compromised?

Often, thieves will go undetected for a period of time, giving them ample opportunity to do what they want to do with your information. During this period of "free reign", purchases may be made, your name and address can be used to apply for accounts and lines of credit, or even worse, they could use their stolen access to your information in order to simply drain your checking or savings accounts before you have the opportunity to do anything about it. Even though in most cases, your financial institutions will reimburse you for the theft after a period of time, logging into your bank account or having a card declined can be really embarrassing and upsetting. Asking "how could someone have gotten one over on me?" is one of the most common questions asked by people that do not utilize any sort of ID theft protection.

The types of ID theft protection available include credit monitoring, ID monitoring, password keepers, single sign on software and credit check monitoring. Each of these options does something slightly unique, offering you the ability to help prevent yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft as well as ensuring that your information is safer. You may not need to utilize credit check monitoring, but using something like a password keeper will not only protect your interests, it can make your life slightly simpler; it will reduce your need to memorize and remember the many passwords that you use on a daily basis. Choosing the best type of identity theft protection will not be the same process for everyone- which is why so many different options are available.

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