Our country has been plagued and bombarded with data breaches and threats of Identity fraud all around us. Seemingly every other week, there is another company coming out of their hub sharing that a data breach has occurred within their computer systems and now hundred upon thousands of people may have been exposed. No wonder why people are scrambling for some form of identity theft protection through their credit cards, car insurances, credit unions, banks, and online. Unfortunately, many of these companies that say they offer identity theft protection only cover the financial portion of the consumer. Very few take a holistic approach to monitor and provide coverage in every aspect relating to a consumer’s protection.
Unfortunately, the fear of one’s identity being compromised or stolen seems to be a wide spread concern for many. It’s considered one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States. Many don’t realize how easily a criminal can obtain your personal information for their malicious use. It’s become one of the savviest offences. A criminal no longer needs to enter your home to gain access to your most prized information. Cyberspace inclusive of the dark web has done a pretty good job of exposing our information to the world.An identity fraud problem if not handled properly and with promptness can also become a legal situation. It’s not just about what you know but really about what you don’t know that CAN hurt you. Most consumers don’t even realize that there are numerous forms of identity theft that are not detected via our credit reports.
Some of those include:
Driver’s License Fraud
Tax Identity Theft
Employment Identity Theft
Synthetic Identity Theft
Medical Identity Theft
Insurance Identity Theft
Children’s Identity Theft
Online Shopping Fraud
It’s imperative to know what to search for in a product or program when looking to protect you and your family. Make sure that the product itself is robust and offers a complete wall of protection that extends beyond the credit reports, bank accounts, and beyond the plastics that you carry in your wallet. Social media has now become a breeding ground for identity thieves as well. So again, look for a comprehensive product as oppose to an inexpensive product. Have you ever heard this saying, “you get what you pay for”? While many identity theft products share their claim to fame, there are no bullet proof solutions that can actually halt identity theft from occurring.
The main objective is to have broad protection in place using a proactive approach, rather than not having anything in place and becoming more reactive. Who do you know that acquires car insurance after they’ve totaled their car; or gets home owners insurance after their house has burned down; or even signs up for life insurance after they’ve died? I’ve actually heard many consumers say, “My credit is so bad that a thief can steal my credit because they’ll just want to give it back”. My reply to anyone who has this mindset is, “You’re more than just a 9 digit Social Security number”! Keep in mind that if a thief gets your credit cards or money from bank accounts, those tangibles can be replaced. However, if a thief steals your identity, that’s your life which is irreplaceable!
There’s an old saying that goes, “It’s better to have something and not need it, than to need something and not have it”. To learn more information on how to help protect what you can’t afford to lose, please visit my website www.alisanders.wearelegalshield.com.
Ali C. Sanders is an Independent Associate of LegalShield.
PO Box 744 Farmington, MI 48332