Are you one of the 33.4 million American victims of identity theft since 1990? Consumer out-of-pocket expenses have totaled $1.5 billion annually since January 2001.
- 34% say someone obtained their credit card information, forged a credit card in their name, and used it to make purchases.
- 12% say someone stole or obtained improperly a paper or computer record with their personal information on it and used that to forge their identity.
- 11% say someone stole their wallet or purse and used their identity.
- 10% say someone opened charge accounts in stores in their name and made purchases as them.
- 7% say someone opened a bank account in their name or forged checks and obtained money from their account.
- 7% say someone got to their mail or mailbox and used information there to steal their identity.
- 5% say they lost their wallet or purse and someone used their identity.
4% say someone went to a public record and used information there to steal their identity.
- 3% say someone created false IDs and posed as them to get government benefits or payments.
- 16% say it was a friend, relative or co-worker who stole their identity.
Are You at Risk for Identity Theft? Test Your “Identity Quotient”
- I receive several offers of pre-approved credit every week. (5 Points)
- Add 5 points if you do not shred them before putting them in the trash.
- I carry my Social Security card in my wallet. (10 points)
- My slate driver’s license has my Social Security Number (SSN) printed on it, and I have not contacted the Department of Motor Vehicles to request a different number. (10 points)
- I do not have a PO Box or a locked, secured mailbox. (5 points)
- I use an unlocked, open box at work or at my home to drop off my outgoing mail. (10 points)
- I carry my military ID in my wallet at all times. (10 points)
- I do not shred or tear banking or credit information when I throw it in the trash. (10 points)
- I provide my Social Security Number whenever asked, without asking questions as to how that information will be safeguarded. (10 points)
- Add 5 points if you provide it orally without checking to see who might be listening.
- I am required to use my SSN at work as an employee ID or at college as a student ID number. (5 points)
- My SSN is printed on my employee badge that I wear at work or in public. Or it is posted on my time card in full view if others, or is on other documents frequently seen by many others in my workplace. (10 points)
- I have my SSN and/or driver’s license number printed on my personal checks. (10 points)
- I am listed in a “Who’s Who” guide. (5 points)
- I carry my insurance card in my wallet and either my SSN or that of my spouse is the ID number. (10 points)
- I have not ordered a copy of my credit reports for at least 2 years. (20 points)
- I do not believe that people would root around in my trash looking for credit or financial information or looking for documents containing my SSN. (10 points)
Each one of these questions represents a possible avenue for an identity theft.
Understanding Your Score:
- 100+ points – Recent surveys* indicate that 7-10 million people were victims of ID theft last year. You are at high risk. We recommend you purchase a paper shredder, become more security-aware in document handling, and start to question why people need your personal data.
- 50-100 points – Your odds of being victimized are about average. Higher if you have good credit.
- 0-50 points – Congratulations. You have a high “IQ.” Keep up the good work and don’t let your guard down now.
“For information on recent identity theft survey findings, visit the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse web site at https://www.privacyrights.org/ar/idtheftsurveys.htm
Meramec Valley Mutual Insurance is a Missouri-only (policy-owner-owned) insurance company established in 1887 and located in Hillsboro, Missouri.
Meramec Valley offers Identity Recovery protection as an optional and valuable addition to their line of insurance products. For more information about becoming a part of this 128 year old company, please contact one of our professional agents nearest you. https://mymutual.net/for-an-agent-near-you/