Holiday Shopping: Avoid ID Theft and Fraud

November 26, 2011 8:18:16 AM PST
Thanksgiving weekend marks the traditional beginning to the holiday-shopping season.

It is not just a high season for shopping, but also for identity theft and fraud. But you can protect yourself from becoming a victim with very simple steps. Joan Jensen, president and CEO of Central Credit Union of Illinois, was in our ABC7 studio to tell us how to maintain financial peace of mind by protecting your money and identity.

Joan's Tips:

1. Be Prepared
Set up credit card account alerts on all your credit cards
Check your account history frequently online (even for inactive cards)
Stay vigilant to small charges

2. When In Stores
Carry only the one or two credit/ debit cards you'll use that day
Be aware of customers standing nearby when conducting a credit card transaction
Save all receipts, and match them up against your statements

3. While Online
Use only authenticated Web sites to make online purchases; look for "https" or the locked padlock image
Use a combination of letters and numbers for your financial account passwords
Never shop on a public Wi-Fi connection
Consider using PayPal or a similar service

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