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Stay on the Path to Financial Success by Staying Away from Fraud

| August 24, 2015
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In order to be financially successful you must follow trusted strategies for managing the various financial components that come into play, no matter who you are or what your level of income may be. Unfortunately, in this day and age, unauthorized or fraudulent activity is one of those components. While legislation, banks, and credit card companies go to great efforts to ensure that your identity and financial interests are protected, theft continues to soar. You work hard for your money, and you deserve to know that it is safe. Implementing the following strategies for preventing identity theft and for keeping your finances secure will help to ensure your financial success.

Watch your Mailbox and E-Mail

Hijacking email accounts and obtaining personal information from discarded mail are common methods thieves use to steal identities. By searching for and stealing credit card offers, thieves get away with accessing your money and using these cards for themselves. Consider how many such offers you receive in your mailbox each month. Rather than simply throwing these away, take the extra time to shred them so that thieves can't comb through your garbage and access sensitive information. In fact, you should shred all documents that contain any personal information like your banking information or social security number.

Monitor Credit and Bank Cards Statement

Although credit cards and debit cards provide convenience and ease of use, identity thieves can also easily copy them. Thieves who use scanners of their own to obtain the card’s information commonly steal cards that have radio frequency identification, so you may want to avoid using such cards. Additionally, it’s a good idea to closely and regularly monitor your bank and credit card statements, as this is one of the best ways to spot unauthorized use of your cards. 

Be Cautious while Shopping Online

If you are one who enjoys the convenience of shopping online, be sure to shop at venues that secure your credit card information. By patronizing online stores that have "https" in their address bar, you’re provided with greater security regarding your transaction than the typical "http." Of course, you want to stick to trusted venues when shopping online. You might also want to go through a reputable third-party vendor like Paypal to make your transaction payments.

Use Fraud Alerts

Several credit cards and debit cards are now outfitted with advanced fraud alerts. This is a safeguard that many banks are using to protect their clients. Many times, the bank's fraud system will spot a potentially fraudulent transaction long before you might even suspect there's a problem. At that point, the bank can then immediately deny the transaction and freeze the card before issuing you a new one. Speak with your bank or credit card company about its built-in fraud protections and how they can keep your financial identity safe. 

Monitor Credit Report

Finally, take some time to periodically monitor your credit report to make sure nothing is amiss. In the event of a problem, you are able to put a security freeze on your credit. This ensures that no one can use your identity to secure a credit card in your name to use for fraudulent purposes.

 

Exercise these strategies to protect your identity and financial wellbeing, and to keep you on the path to financial success. A little bit of extra caution goes a long way to keeping thieves out of your personal business, and a close eye on your finances is always a good thing.

 

These are the views of Social Advisors, and not necessarily those of the named representative, Broker dealer or Investment Advisor, and should not be construed as investment advice. Neither the named representative nor the named Broker dealer or Investment Advisor gives tax or legal advice. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. Please consult your financial advisor for further information.

 

Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance. Richard L Farrar is a registered representative of Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp. Securities offered through Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp., a broker/dealer (Member SIPC). Investment advisory services offered through Sagemark Consulting, a division of Lincoln Financial Advisors, a registered investment advisor. Insurance offered through Lincoln affiliates and other fine companies. CRN-1265061-080415

 

 

 

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