Here, we have listed some tips that can help you out to keep those thieves at bay! Read ahead and prepare well before you leave for your new journey!
Destroy/remove unnecessary information
First of all, you should not be naïve enough to leave your confidential information just lying around your room or on your computer. If you have hard copies of forms of documents that contain important information, shred them. ATM, credit card and even gas station receipts should be cross shredded, so even if the thieves rummage through your garbage, they do not find anything usable. If you have any such information on your computer like a form you filled which required your SSN, delete it completely after you have submitted it.
Secure your mail/other accounts with passwords
The easiest way to steal your identity is to hack into your mailbox or your computer as your mail/ computer will most likely have all the information that these thieves need to carry out their task. Make sure that after you have read the mail, delete it. If there are some important messages that need to be retained for further use, encrypt your laptop and then your mailbox with a 12 lettered password. Hackers have sophisticated software that can easily guess your passwords, but with every letter you add to your password, it becomes difficult for them. Also, do not keep obvious passwords and remember to add some numerical characters too.
Never share too much personal information on social networking sites!
Many students think that is totally alright to share everything on their social media page. Remember, students, by doing so you are making it easy for these thieves to come and steal your identity! The information you share can be used to answer the personal questions you have set to secure your accounts. So, be careful with all the personal information you share!
Never give anyone your Social Security number
Legitimate companies and banks do not ask their client’s social security number or any other confidential information over the phone or via an email, as they are aware of cyber crime and hacking issues. So, remember if anyone is asking for your social security number over the phone or through an email, there is a 98% chance that it is someone posing to be a legitimate company only to get to your bank account and empty it out. Be very, very careful about these scammers, as you will have to face many of them. To avoid identity theft, never carry your card with you, as your SSN is a primary target for identity thieves. Also, beware of false companies and do not hand out your SSN to just anybody asking for it.
Remember , always keep your room locked. At home, you know that if anything is missing from your room, your siblings might have taken it, but in college, if you keep your door unlocked, there is no guarantee that you will find what you have lost. Take all the necessary precautions before you become a victim of a crime!
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