Preventing identity fraud

Identity fraud is a problem that can affect anyone. However, simple precautions can help you protect yourself.

Follow these tips to help ensure you don’t become a victim of identity theft.

Register to vote

Registering your vote not only helps improve your credit profile, it also helps stop identity fraud.

Lenders will use the address details you provide to check your identity, and being on the electoral roll provides evidence that you are living at the address you have provided. A credit application which has a different address to the one on the electoral roll may indicate that it is fraudulent.

Be safe on social networking

The danger of social networking is that we give away far too much personal information – leaving ourselves vulnerable to identity theft.

The key is not giving too much away. Criminals can use even the most basic information to steal your identity, so be careful what you share publicly online.

Keep your full name, date of birth and address off your social media accounts and don’t share anything that you use as a password, such as your dog’s name or wedding anniversary.

Report missing or stolen documents

It goes without saying that you should report any missing or stolen documents as soon as possible.

If these documents fall into the wrong hands, you could become a victim of ID theft so make sure you notify the relevant organisations as soon as you realise your documents are missing. That way if a criminal spends any money in your name, there’ll be a record that it wasn’t you.

Shred documents containing personal information

Don’t give thieves a helping hand by leaving personal information lying around.

Shred or destroy any documents containing personal information. This means financial statements but also less obvious documents like catalogues containing your name, address and account number. This includes never writing down your PIN or password as this could easily fall into the wrong hands.

Check for suspicious transactions

One of the best methods of identity theft protection is to regularly check your credit report for suspicious activity. You should also check your bank and credit card statements to ensure all transactions were made by you.

Check your credit report regularly

Regularly checking your credit file will also help you spot any suspicious activity. You can access your credit report from Callcredit in two ways:

  1. £2 Statutory Report
  2. Noddle – Access to your free for life credit report and credit score which allows you to look for any transactions you didn’t make. A paid for upgrade is also available with this service enabling you to receive weekly alerts highlighting significant changes to your credit report to check for any suspicious activity.