Identity Theft Protection

True story: one of my brothers-in-law had his identity stolen. That’s not even the crazy part. The thief walked into a Blockbuster movie rental (if anyone remembers what that is!) and tried to rent a movie under my brother-in-law’s name. Little did the guy know that the person behind the counter was my cousin. My cousin looks at him quizzically and says, “this is not you.” The guy turns around and says, “of course it is me.” My cousin without skipping a beat says, “No. This is my actually my cousin.”

The guy panicked and ran out of the store with my cousin holding the ID! Oh yeah, did I also mention that the guy tried to run over his girlfriend with a car he rented also? So now, according to the DMV, my brother-in-law was wanted for manslaughter and a dozen other traffic violations!!

Can you imagine having something so personal as your identity stolen from you? Someone walking around claiming to be you in every capacity: buying groceries, getting gas in the car, going to the movies. It’s a total invasion of privacy! I imagine I would feel slighted, cheated and angry. Someone is claiming to be me?? How dare they??

I just learned recently that a different brother-in-law had his debit card compromised. Thankfully the bank caught it in time and froze the account, but he couldn’t take cash out. Not that it is such a big deal since there are so many apps out there now that allow you to transfer money with ease. But still, that’s pretty unsettling.

The reality of the situation is that during the COVID-19 outbreak, hackers are primed and ready to strike at any moment. With people following the stay-at-home order and purchasing online more frequently, anyone is susceptible to fraud. Which brings me to my point: you need to get identity theft protection.

There are several options to choose from out there, but my family chose Zander Insurance for Identity Theft Protection. They allow you to monitor your social security number, driver’s license and up to 5 passports. Not to mention up to 10 of each of the following: email addresses, phone numbers, credit/debit cards, bank accounts and retail store cards/membership cards, medical ID’s. On the family plan, your spouse has his/her own unique login and your children’s social security numbers are also protected.

Did you know, that your children are a huge target when it comes to social security/identity theft? People can open a credit card in their name and rack up debt without you or the child being any the wiser. If you don’t think that is terrifying, then I don’t know what else to tell you.

My advice? Get a quote from several different places that offer ID theft protection and get protected TODAY. Please – do it for yourself, your family, your legacy.

Published by MadsenFinancialCoaching

Madsen Financial Coaching was created to bring awareness to personal finance. When you pay attention, you win! We work with clients to understand their behavior and relationship with money, as well as basics of personal finance such as: following a budget, eliminating debt and building an emergency fund to name a few. We want you to succeed, and it starts with your willingness to put in the work.

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