Identity theft is a major worldwide concern. As much as we try to protect ourselves, we might still fall victim to identity theft at some point in our lives. Approximately 15 million United States residents have their identities used fraudulently each year with financial losses totalling upwards of $50 billion. From individually tailored phishing scams to increasingly successful hacks of corporate and government databases, there is an ever-increasing threat that we’re up against.
The Threat Isn’t Just Online
It’s safe to say that by now, we’ve all smartened up about potential online theft. Sketchy email subject lines? To the ‘Spam’ folder you go. Any mid-transaction pop-up windows? Bail on that cart and delete all cookies. But we’re so focused on the online battle that we’re not on high alert when it comes to offline threats. At least, not as often as we should be.
What about the thieves who still rummage through trash, looking for credit card account numbers and other revealing personal information? What about the in-person purchases that copy your full credit card number? There’s still plenty of identity theft danger outside of the internet, and we need to be on the lookout.
Solutions to Offline Identity Theft
In order to protect yourself from offline identity theft, make sure you’re alwaysshredding your sensitive mail, not giving out your personal information over the phone unless you’re sure you’re talking to the right person, making sure no one is listening to your conversations when you do disclose personal information, and so on. Essentially, keep your personal info close to you, like it’s a precious heirloom. Be sensible.
There are also products that help guard against a potential identity theft attack, like the Stronghold ID Wallet and the Kes'pon ID Stamp Roller. The Stronghold ID Wallet blocks radio-frequency identification (RFID) hackers from stealing information stored on the microchips in your credit card, while the Kes’pon ID Stamp Roller covers up personal information on your mail making it impossible to read. While these are great options, women need something like the Stronghold ID Wallet for handbags.
RFID Purse Organizer Review
Enter the RFID purse organizer. This is identity theft protection on-the-go for women. Plus, it’s a convenient purse organizer in and of itself, which allows for easy bag switching. Much like the Stronghold ID Wallet, this purse organizer keeps the microchips in your credit cards safe, by blocking radio-frequency identification. Think of it as a powerful shield for your personal items and information! We were able to test out this product to give you a full review before you purchase.
1. The packaging was plastic – so not too bulky. Make sure you recycle the plastic once you’re done with it.
2. The organizer came folded neatly into cardboard with info. And don’t forget to recycle the cardboard too!
3. Once the organizer was unpacked, I took photos from several different angles.
a. Front view with extra zippered compartment.
b. Back view (or “other” front) with two external pouches for phones, iPods, or other small items.
c. Inside compartment view with plenty of room and dividers to organize!
d.Inside compartment view, including a handy little black flashlight attached for when you can’t easily find stuff in your purse. My purse tends to be a black hole, so a flashlight is a brilliant addition.
e.Check out the little handles at the top on each side, making it easy to pick the organizer up and move it between bags if traveling or switching purses.
If you want to get your hands on a purse organizer that also helps protect your identity head on over to ChecksUnlimited.com! They have the medium size RFID purse organizer, in gray, for only $24.99 or the large size RFID purse organizer, in gray, for $29.99. Kind of a steal, wouldn’t you say?
Common Sense Tips for Staying Safe - Online & Offline
- In addition to using the incredibly convenient identity theft protection products mentioned above, always be proactive in your safety. Here’s a list of steps you can take to practically guarantee that safety at all times:
- Install antivirus software on your computer, tablet, and phone. Thanks to the team at CouponPal you can simply view this handy list of the Top 5 All-In-One Antivirus Solutions and pick your favorite.
- DO NOT open attachments from email addresses or people you don’t know.
- Always check for the https:// when shopping online. This ensures your transaction is safe and your information will be kept private.
- Make sure you know where your credit cards and other sensitive documents are at all times. Think about a safe box for these.
- DO NOT share credit card numbers over email or instant messenger.
- Set up alerts from credit score reports to keep an eye on any activity tied to your name and social security number. Tip: If you were one of the many folks who shopped at Target during their data breach you can sign up for a free year of credit monitoring!
- Sign up with a service like LifeLock, Identity Force, or Trusted ID that specifically guard against identity theft.
The fight to keep our identity safe from shady predators is ongoing and constantly evolving. We must remain paranoid and educated on the ways these creeps continue to hack into databases, invade our personal space, and try to ruin our lives. While this sometimes seems like a losing battle, we must remember that we absolutely can stay one step ahead of them and we can protect our identities from their greedy little clutches. It can be done!