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Identity Thieves Want to Live YOUR Best Life, Part 1 of 2

Tom warned his dad he should be careful about shredding documents and mail, including junk mail, to protect his identity. He also told his dad to make sure to destroy the labels and barcodes on his prescription medication bottles before throwing them away. But Tom’s dad didn’t listen, and Tom decided to teach his dad a lesson during Thanksgiving dinner with the family.

“Hey dad, I found out you’re taking six different medications for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, ulcers, and that you recently refilled your prescription for Via---,” Tommy announced to everyone at the table.

“WHAT?? How did you get that information? And what are you doing announcing it to everyone??” Tom’s dad was furious. And embarrassed as a few giggles were muffled.

“Simple. I saw your prescription bottles in the trash, and I used this app on my phone to scan the bar code and get all your private information, including which drugs you’re taking. I told you that identity thieves are working hard to live a better life – by stealing your name and personal information!” Tommy explained.

This is a real scenario, shared by someone who was a victim of identity theft, and made it his mission to tell friends, family, and others how to protect themselves. Quite simply, you must destroy all personal identifying information and the bar code information on every label, envelope, or document. Like bar codes on products in stores, they contain important information about you that shouldn’t be in the wrong hands.

If you suspect you’re a victim of identity theft, you should immediately visit www.IdentityTheft.gov to report it. You can go online or call the 3 credit agencies to report fraud and/or put a fraud alert on your accounts:

www.Experian.com/fraudalert

1-888-397-3742

www.TransUnion.com/fraud

1-800-680-7289

www.Equifax.com/

CreditReportAssistance

1-888-766-0008

 

By Kim Ruiz, Expressly Written, LLC

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