Monday, July 21, 2014

Reducing Your Family's ID Theft Risk with LifeLock

Disclosure: I was a guest at a LifeLock event and received promotional items; all opinions expressed are my own.

The day I went into labor with Grayson I also attended a luncheon sponsored by LifeLock at Tavern on the Green. Since I was well overdue, a few people questioned my decision to venture into Manhattan, but I'm so glad I went - I actually think getting out into the city and walking helped bring labor on!

I had heard quite a bit about LifeLock over the years and was intrigued to learn Jean Chatzky, a finance expert I've followed over the years, would be in attendance. Oh and the fact that it was at the renovated Tavern on the Green wasn't too bad either - it was a gorgeous day to be out! 

The luncheon covered these 4 vulnerable groups that are often subject to ID theft:
  • Newlyweds
  • Parents
  • Homeowners
  • Newly Single 
I have never been a victim of identity theft, but have known those who have and it really is a nightmare. There was a woman in attendance who shared her own story, and while it definitely is important to learn from others who have gone through it, it is something I plan to never experience. Did you see that? I wrote plan NOT hope - it really does require planning to reduce the risk of being a victim of identity theft.

The panel including Jean Chatzky and Hilary Schneider, President of Lifelock, Inc. shared these helpful tips:
  • Avoid geotagging as it increases the likelihood of identity theft 5x (I also am selective in doing this just from a safety perspective with my kids)
  • Avoid posting your purchases online for example, the "I just bought . . ." auto-posting options many retail sites offer maymake it easier for someone to track your last few purchases which are often needed for verifying you bank account access when calling in
  • More devices = more risk: those with a phone, tablet and laptop increase their risk for ID theft by 46% so be careful about logging in across devices 
  • Only use your debit card for cash: consumer protection offered by credit cards can't be beat; the same can't be said for debit cards which are often cumbersome about proving and providing reimbursements for fraud purchases
  • Child ID theft it rampant: be sure to check your children's credit reports as well
With Jean Chatzky (and 41 weeks pregnant)
Although I had to leave during the Q & A to get Nia from school, I do have to say I really appreciated the information presented at the event, and that it wasn't an upsell for services - I left feeling empowered and I thank LifeLock for that!

Have you or someone close to you been the victim of identity theft? Have you made a plan to reduce the risk? Be sure to visit LifeLock to learn more.