10 Reasons Why You’re More Susceptible to Identity Theft During the Holidays

In November 20, 2014

identity theft

Identity theft is a scary matter. It can lead to personal distress and financial ruin—even to problems that can last for years. While it is possible to be a victim of identity theft any time of the year, the holidays seem to make it more of a possibility—but why? The reasons are numerous. Discover 10 reasons why you could be more susceptible to identity theft during the holidays:

  • You Do More Shopping – Every time you use your card in the store, you’re giving an identity thief the chance to look over your shoulder and see your PIN number.
  • You Make Online Purchases – Along the same lines, you are more likely to make online purchases, which can be a danger if you are not purchasing from reputable websites.
  • Your Mail is Heavier – You are receiving Christmas cards, holiday letters and packages along with your regular bills and bank statements. As such, it is much easier for an identity thief to steal a bank statement or credit card application without you noticing.
  • You’re Busy – With the business of the holiday season, you may be less likely to be vigilant about protecting your identity—opening the door for thieves.
  • Your Bank Activity is Higher – You probably do a good job of regularly checking your bank statement for unexpected charges. However, during the holidays, you may have more transactions which could make this more difficult.
  • You Travel – Traveling makes it easier for identity thieves to steal your mail, get ahold of credit cards and other potential hazards. Traveling is not normally dangerous, but it has the potential to make you more vulnerable if precautions are not taken.
  • You Have Guests – If you open your home to guests for a big party or gathering, especially when you may not know everyone in attendance, it can be possible for potential thieves to sort through your mail, steal a birth certificate or even grab your purse.
  • Stores are Less Careful – You count on the stores you shop at to guard your information; however, they are busy too especially during the holidays. This is the time of year when accidents occur.
  • You Don’t Check Your Credit – You may have spent more on your credit card than you planned or you decided to open a new account. This makes checking your credit a nerve-wracking experience. If you fail to check your records on a regular basis, you may miss out on warning signs.
  • You Use Unsecured Wifi – It can be tempting to hop on the coffee shop Wifi to order your children’s gifts, but know that these unsecured connections can put your information at risk.

Now that you know a few of the reasons why the holidays are prime time for identity theft, perhaps you can better prepare yourself to avoid becoming a victim. Plus, you can share this information with your friends and family—what better gift can you give than peace-of-mind?

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