#18 Home Invasion
It’s everybody’s nightmare – a home invasion. That’s why so many people take precautions by purchasing smart home accessories like cameras and video doorbells. Unfortunately, some criminals still don’t care, and when they see an opportunity to burglarize a home, they will do it. Beyond losing the stashed cash, precious jewelry, and the TV, the victims will likely lose a lot more than that. You become a lot more susceptible to identity theft.
What items can be stolen from your home that can result in subsequent identity theft?
- Laptop or computer: Much of people’s lives are reflected in all of the data stored on all of our devices, so if a criminal succeeded in taking one of your devices when they broke into your home, taking such a device would allow the criminal all of the time that they needed to break into it if it’s password protected. The criminal would then be able to look at your credit card accounts, medical insurance, tax documents, photos, and payment information that you use for shopping online.
- Mail: A criminal is able to steal important information without even breaking into your home. How? Your mailbox. Many people still receive some of their important bills or documentation via mail which makes them vulnerable to identity theft. Statements from your banks, credit card company, or other financial accounts may be putting you at risk because they usually have account numbers, or other sensitive information like date of birth, Social Security information, IRS documentation, or even current medical providers shown on the documents.
- Private documents: If a criminal does invade your home, they won’t take just the TV set. In many cases, a criminal is also seeking documents that they can use to continue their spree – resulting in multiple forms of identity theft for the victim. Such documents the criminal would be looking for include:
- Birth certificates
- Social Security cards
- Expired driver’s licenses
- Tax returns
- Property deeds and home appraisals
- Estate planning paperwork
- Financial documents from banks or investment accounts
Credit monitoring will not alert you to this type of fraud.
LibertyID will take the following steps for/with their members:
- Place fraud alerts at all three credit reporting agencies.
- Place credit freezes at all three credit reporting agencies, if appropriate.
- Contact appropriate agencies of missing documents.
- Review credit reports with the victim to ensure there is no identity theft has taken place according to the three credit report bureaus.
- Provide single bureau credit monitoring with alerts for 12 months.
- Periodically contact the member throughout the 12 months following if warranted.