Identity Theft in Your Mailbox

Identity Theft in Your Mailbox

Author: John Shelby

One tip that all Identity Theft experts will agree upon, is to monitor your mailbox at home. There quite often is enough information in one bill or bank statement to give an Identity Thief a self starter kit. Imagine if that Identity Thief were to have all of your mail? That is why mailboxes are such a huge target for Identity Thieves. Bank account numbers, credit card information, and at times Social Security Numbers or Drivers License numbers can all be in your mailbox at the same time.

I, being an Identity Theft victim, am shocked at how many people totally ignore this risk. I actually deliver in an area that still has curbside mailboxes. I am amazed at how many people will just leave their mail in the box. Some people leave for just a few days, some people go on complete vacations, some are lazy and only check their mailbox every few days, and others just up and move. The mail sometimes piles up for days before the mail carrier even notices. To an Identity Thief this is easy pickins’, you can’t just make it easy on these guys.

There are very simple and easy solutions to prevent this from happening.

First of all, if you are planning to be away from the house for any extended amount of time, you need to notify your mail carrier or the Postal Service. You can contact them by phone, the USPS website(USPS.COM), or by personally notifying your carrier. The Post Office will hold your mail while you are gone, no questions asked, no worries, and no fee for the service. If you are going to be gone for any time exceeding 30 days, you should consider forwarding your mail to your temporary address. If you are moving permanently, it is actually very easy to change your address, and also free. Whatever the situation, it is a very bad idea to even leave your mail in the mailbox overnight. You never know when these thieves will be scouting your neighborhood.

The easiest way to protect your information that might be in your mailbox is to have all of your mail delivered to a P.O. box. This option is often not practical, needing to drive to wherever your P.O. box is located, and finding the time to do so with your busy schedule. Also there is the fee for the P.O. box to consider.

Identity Theft is real, and it can happen to you. It happened to me and I can tell you that it can destroy you. Let’s make it at least a little harder for these Identity Thieves just by being aware and pro-active in safeguarding our identities.

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About the Author

For more tips on protecting your identity and my personal Identity Theft story:

You could already be a victim and not even know it!

Changing Your Address?:

For Hold Mail Services:

To forward your mail to a new address:

And as always: Please for your own sanity, enroll in some type of Identity Monitoring Service

Last modified on January 9, 2014

One Response to “Identity Theft in Your Mailbox”

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