If you have ever had your identity stolen, you know what a hassle it can be. Actually it's more of a horror. If this is something you have never heard about, it is not literally possible to steal an identity of course, what we are talking about here is when anyone uses your personally identifying information, like your name, your driver's license number, Social Security, or credit card number, without your permission, to commit a fraud. Cases of identity theft are on the rise.
Why do I mention this now? Well, December is Identity Theft Prevention and Awareness Month. It's a good time to become more aware of who might have access to your personal information and who might misuse it.
Being watchful is a big help. Always go over your bank statements for example. Also, did you know that you are entitled to one free credit report per year of each of the three national credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion)? Just go to http://www.annualcreditreport.com
California is really leading the way in fighting a kinds of identity theft. Most states have followed California's lead and have enacted mandatory data breach notification laws. Under these laws, companies that report a data breach will typically report it to all their customers.
Stay safe. Protect your personal information and protect the information of your dependents. Share this information too. We all need to be aware. The earlier you catch any problems, the easier they are to resolve.