June 4, 2013

Moving this summer? Here are some tips to keep your identity safe during a move!

With our impending move approaching, I worry about things like keeping my personal files safely guarded as they switch many hands on the way to the new house-here is a great guest post with ideas on how to protect yourself and your family during a move!

With half of all moves in the United States taking place between Memorial Day and Labor Day, that unfortunately also means an increase in identity theft during the summer months as moving creates ample opportunity for criminals to take advantage.

Moving can be an overwhelming experience that creates opportunities for enterprising criminals. Make sure to protect your identity amidst the shuffle by following these smart steps from Experian's ProtectMyID (www.protectmyid.com)
  • Change your address with all the companies, financial institutions, magazines, and other organizations that regularly send you mail. Identity theft is often carried out by stealing mail. The people who move into your old residence won’t necessarily steal your identity, but they will most likely throw mail that isn’t theirs, and they won’t necessarily take the care to shred it as you would. Prior to your move, change your mailing address through the United States Postal Service. You can even choose the date you want the change to take effect, so feel free to do this task early and cross it off your list.
  • Shed and shred. Moving creates a good opportunity to get rid of things you no longer need, including old documents. But don’t just throw them away; shred sensitive personal documents you don’t need to keep.
  • Keep physical tabs on your identity. Regardless of whether you move yourself or use a moving company, keep your important documents with you in a secured place. When it comes to your identity, a filing cabinet in a trailer isn’t secure enough.
  • Always keep the security of your identity in mind. Hire only a reputable moving company. After all, you are inviting them into your home. And, if your movers are going to pack your belongings for you, secure your important documents prior to their arrival.
  • Manage your technology inventory closely. Many households now include multiple computers, mobile phones, tablets, and other devices storing sensitive information. It would be easy for one to be inadvertently misplaced, or purposely stolen. Make sure your devices are securely packed in unmarked packaging, and that they are locked with strong passwords.
 Disclosure: This is a guest post.