Tip of the Week - March 8, 2016 - Protecting your personal information: shred, secure & scale back

We spend a lot of time worrying about protecting our personal information online, but what about the things we do on a daily basis that puts our personal information at risk of being stolen?  Tossing out unopened mail, walking away from our wallets at work or the hair stylists, packing our social security card and every credit card we own with us everywhere we go.

"Shred, secure and scale back.  That's what I advise people to do as I speak to them at consumer safety and fraud protection seminars," said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) Foundation Chairman Kenny Ehrman. "Shred unwanted mail, receipts, credit card offers and applications, insurance and bank statements, old credit cards, anything with your name, address, and other personal information on it."

In addition, Ehrman reminds consumers to secure their belongings.  At home, lock financial records in a safe place.  At work, lock wallets in a drawer.  At the hair stylist's, never leave a wallet at the work station while getting your hair washed.

And finally, scale back!  Scale back what you carry in your wallet.  Don't carry a social security card, Medicare cardor credit cards you won't be using.  Note which cards you do have in your wallet.   It's as easy as snapping a photo with your cell phone.