I lost my wallet last year.

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I searched high and low and in the end I came to the conclusion that it was a pickpocket situation. I ended up having to replace insurance cards, debit cards and I lost some cash that day. But according to experts it could have been much worse.

According to recent stats from The Ascent, there were nearly 2 million cases of identity theft reported in the US from January of 2022 to September of 2023 and the numbers are rising every year. Connecticut reported over 8,000 cases of ID theft in 2022, which works out to 226 reports per 100 thousand people.

The thieves are not necessarily looking for your cash anymore, they want critical information like your social security card to get their hands on all your money.

The good ID thieves don't need your social security to get access to all your accounts; they can piece it together with credit, debit other personal information but experts warn that losing this, makes it too easy for the crooks.

Michelle Heart - Canva
Michelle Heart - Canva

One California official even says protecting your social security card is the #1 most important thing you can do to protect your identity.

Other items you should remove from your wallet or purse include:

  • Personal checks
  • House keys
  • Receipts
  • Password cheat sheets
  • Unused gift cards

According to Identitytheft.org there is a ID crime every 22 seconds in America, don't be a victim.

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Here are some other helpful tips for keeping your identity safe:

Don't be the "phish" that takes the bait

OAG says: "Scam artists "phish" for victims by pretending to be banks, stores or government agencies. They do this over the phone, in e-mails and in the regular mail. Do not respond to any request to verify your account number or password."

Keep your passwords difficult

OAG says: "Use different passwords for all your accounts. Make those passwords strong with at least eight characters, including a mix of letters, numbers, and symbols ($+r0^gh@h@)."

Don't give away everything on social media

OAG says: "What you share on social networks (your home or email address; children’s names; birth date and so on) is what tech-savvy thieves use for scams, phishing, and account theft. Don’t over share." 

Basically we all need to forgo any convenience and live in fear 100% of the time. You're welcome.

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