I am getting great response to this exclusive series on Identity Theft from my readers! It tells me that there is a NEED and WANT for the information shared here on our subject and I am glad that I took time to do the research. The following post is the third installment in the series and it talks about how to keep yourself together while shopping at the Mall. No information shared here is too simple to pass up. Remember, hackers do not need a whole lot of information to have a go at your identity by stealing it. That being said, do not miss on the previous posts in this series. You can find them under “Identity Theft-Series” category. Happy Reading!
How to Stay Safe From Identity Theft at the Mall
Identity thieves love to take advantage of people who let their guard down while shopping, which is why staying protected from identity theft at the mall is so important. There are several things you can do to make sure that you don’t become a victim, so make sure you follow these tips the next time you go shopping.
Keep Your Receipts With You
Whenever a cashier asks if you want your receipt with you or in the bag, always keep the receipt with you. Your receipt may not have your whole credit card number on it, but it may have just enough information for identity thieves to get what they need. You may toss your bag in the garbage while still in the mall, and an opportunistic thief will go after that bag.
Keep an Eye on Your Credit Card
If you are making a purchase at a register that doesn’t allow you to swipe your own card, make sure you watch your cashier very closely. Some people have been known to copy credit card information down on a sheet of paper. Once they get home, they will use your credit card information to make large purchases. Don’t be afraid to ask a cashier what is being written down. If the person is dishonest, he or she will get spooked and stop copying your credit card number. Another important thing to remember is that you cannot be asked to provide a credit card as a form of ID when paying with a check. You can offer up your driver’s license, but do not trust someone who states that they need to see a credit card as well.
Avoid the ATMs
Public ATMs are a problem for multiple reasons. Some thieves have developed software that fits directly on the ATM that clones your debit card information and your pin. You won’t be able to detect that the ATM has a problem until later when someone has run off with your money.
Other identity thieves will put a piece of gum or a drop of glue in the credit card slot and wait. They will stand close by and watch you enter your pin number, and as you struggle to get the card out, they may even offer to help you. Once you are gone (with your debit card lost in the slot), the thieves will use tweezers to extract your card and make off with your money.
Shopping can be fun, but it is important to remember to protect your money and your identity at all times. Once thieves have your credit card information, they can learn virtually anything they want about you, and they can use that information to destroy your credit. Staying safe from identity theft at the mall doesn’t have to be hard as long as you keep these tips in mind while you shop.