Tuesday, May 01, 2007

identity theft preventative measures

According to Carol Lewis of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, it is important to monitor your annual credit report.

  • Call (877) 332-8228 or go to annualcreditreport.com
  • In Massachusetts each resident is entitled to one free credit report every year and people should take advantage of that, Lewis said, to make sure their credit hasn't been damaged by hackers.
According to identity theft sleuth Ken Dunham of Verisign, consumers can protect themselves by:
  • Do not implicitly trust any media you get over the Internet--in other words, don't hand out your credit- or personal information to just an pop-up ad or random e-mail that is sent to you.
  • Follow basic best practices. Everyone should have an anti-virus program and firewall on their computers. Why? Because these things are free and can act as a stymie to some of the phishing e-mails that can reach you.
  • Be aware: you're on the Internet already, so click over to the news and check for current scams, and stay in touch with what is going on in the world.