Moving can be an overwhelming and distracting experience that creates opportunities for enterprising criminals to make you a victim of identity theft.
By the way, when someone steals your identity, you don't wander around like some Jane or John Doe in a state of amnesia. Identity (ID) theft occurs with someone steals your personal information and uses it to access your financial accounts.
Moving away from identity theft
- Change your address with all the companies, financial institutions, magazines, and other organizations that regularly send you mail. Identity theft is often carried out by stealing mail. People who move into your old residence might not steal your identity, but they won't shred or carefully discard your mail as you would.
- Change your address with the United States Postal Service. You can even choose the date you want the change to take effect, so feel free to do this task early and cross it off your list.
- Shed and shred. Moving creates a good opportunity to get rid of things you no longer need, including old documents. Don't just throw them away. Shred sensitive personal documents you don't need to keep.
- Keep physical tabs on your identity. Regardless of whether you move yourself or use a moving company, keep your important documents with you in a secured place. A filing cabinet in a trailer isn't secure from identity theft.
- Always keep the security of your identity in mind. Hire only a reputable moving company. After all, you are inviting strangers into your home. If your movers are going to pack your belongings for you, secure your important documents prior to their arrival to prevent identity theft.
- Manage your technology inventory closely. Many households now include multiple computers, mobile phones, tablets, and other devices storing sensitive information. It would be easy for one to be inadvertently misplaced, or purposely stolen.
Make sure your devices are securely packed in unmarked packaging, and that they are locked with strong passwords that prevent identity theft. Don't put them in the moving van.