Identity theft happens to the best of us
In a previous blog, I shared 10 tips to keep your home safe while on vacation, but this time I’m going to talk about preventing identity theft while you’re away. Unfortunately, fraud happens, especially when you’re on vacation. Here are four steps you can take to avoid ID theft while you’re on the road this summer:
- Enroll in a credit reporting site
Consumers who have been victims of identity theft can turn to a credit site to receive a current credit report and determine whether or not their private information has been compromised. Many credit report sites offer security options to prevent identity theft. Check here for a list of the top credit report sites from Consumer Affairs.
- Hold Your Mail
If you’re going to be gone for more than a few days, take advantage of the USPS Hold Mail Service. Just let your local Post Office know up to 30 days in advance that you’ll be away and they will hold your mail for you until you return. Visit www.USPS.com for more info.
- Only bring necessary personal document
Don’t take more personal documents and credit cards than you absolutely need. Leave your Social Security card at home in a safe place and only take the cards that you’ll use while on vacation. Also, while you’re out and about, it’s a good idea to keep a “backup” credit card secured in your hotel safe.
- Social media no nos
Be prudent with your social media use while you’re away from home. As tempting as it is to show all those great vaca photos on your newsfeed, wait until you return home to show the world what a great time you had. You don’t want the wrong people knowing that your residence is empty while you’re gone.
Summer is a time for vacation and relaxation — NOT for becoming a victim of identity theft. By following these tips to keep your identity safe while on vacation, you can relax and concentrate on having fun! If your travels bring you to Santa Barbara and you realize you never want to leave, give me a call at 805.886.9378 or email me at Cristal@montecito-estate.com. We can carve out some time during your trip to find you the perfect home in in Montecito, Hope Ranch or any of Santa Barbara’s upscale communities. Bon voyage!