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How to Prevent ID Theft While Traveling

Written by  Aug 17, 2021

ID theft is a major concern for many people, especially since hackers have become very skilled at getting into personal emails and bank accounts. The travel industry is also no stranger to scammers but there are ways to protect yourself from falling victim.

Read on to find out how you can protect yourself and your identification when you are traveling away from home. Don’t get caught out by clever scammers and hackers that are all too willing to take any opportunity you give them.

Use Provided Safes

Hotels provide safes for a reason. You may think that just locking your personal belongings in the room is enough, but hotel doors are easy to open if the person knows how. Hotels allow each person to choose the combination they want on the safe. Just be sure only you know what the combination is. How not to be a victim for identity theft case is easy if you follow logical reasoning.

Keep in mind that hotel safes are not massive, and you will probably only have enough space to fit your wallet, passport, and some money. If you have a lot of stuff to store and the hotel safe isn’t big enough, purchase a money bag that can be worn underneath your clothing where no one will see it. This way, it’s always on your person and you will never have to worry about someone breaking into the hotel safe.

Stay away from Open Wi-Fi

Everyone knows that accessing an open Wi-Fi network can be useful when you don’t have data, but it can be quite dangerous if you are not careful. Using public Wi-Fi to get onto your banking app or to log into your personal emails is very risky. Hackers can access personal information including bank accounts and ID numbers because the network stores all the information from any device that logs online to access it.

If you have to access your bank accounts or emails while traveling, ask the hotel if they have a closed network that you can access with a password. This gives you just that little bit of extra security because they will most likely have encryption software and heavy security features.

Credit Before Debit

Credit cards are more secure than magnetic-stripe cards because of the embedded chip technology. Unless someone has your card’s CVV number, credit cards are much safer to travel with than debit cards. Nowadays, you just have to tap your debit card to make a payment at the store, and many don’t ask you to enter your password. If you need to make a purchase online with your credit card, make sure you don’t save the information and delete your browsing history immediately afterward.

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Be careful if you need to draw money at an ATM because there may be a device that can read your card information. You should also call your bank to let them know that you will be traveling. If they spot unusual purchases on your account, they can instantly block the card to avoid more theft. The best method is to tell the bank where you will be staying and what you are likely to buy on your trip.

Don’t Verbalize Information

We all know to keep our social security numbers and addresses secret, and this is especially true when traveling abroad. Scammers listen out for tourists speaking about their schedule or where they are traveling from and can use this information to steal your identity. This also applies to putting pictures of your trip on social media and advertising that you are not at home.

If someone calls asking to confirm your identification, put the phone down and go down to the hotel’s front desk. Hotel employees and banks know not to ask you this type of information. Did you know that a hotel is also legally bound to not verbalize your room number? This is just added security that should be followed for anyone traveling.

Cancel Mail Deliveries

Similar to not letting anyone know you are away from home; you should also cancel all expected mail deliveries for the time you are on a trip. It’s easy to spot when a person isn’t home if their mail starts pilling up at the front door. If you need to have the mail delivered because you are expecting something important, have either a house sitter or someone collect your mail. This will make it seem like there is someone at the house at all times.

Most mail deliveries will contain your name and address and if it’s a bank statement, your social security number will be visible to anyone who opens it.

ID theft is a nuisance, and it can ruin any good vacation. You may be stranded without money or a passport to get back home, so considering these tips will only help you protect yourself and your identity. Take precautions to lessen the risks at all costs with these handy tips.