Disaster Preparedness Month: Strengthen Your ID Protections – Here Are 3 Ways to Strengthen Your Identity Protections During a Disaster. 

 

The month of September is National Preparedness Month. Each year the focus is on reminding businesses and communities about the importance of being prepared in advance of potential emergency and disaster situations before they happen.  With an already active hurricane season, the reminder to get started early on these protections is important. 

 

This year’s theme is: “Prepare to Protect. Preparing for disasters is protecting everyone you love.”

 

We couldn’t let the month pass by without also mentioning the importance of Identity Theft protections as part of these plans. Having an escape route, emergency kit and brushing up on first aid is absolutely critical, but be sure to also have a plan for maintaining security of your private information during these emergencies. 

 

The unfortunate reality is that hackers, identity thieves, and criminals are out there and looking to exploit natural disasters and vulnerable individuals. 

 

Here Are 3 Ways to Strengthen Your Identity for Disaster Preparedness Month. 

 

  • Put Safeguards in Place Early

 

The best way to be prepared for an emergency is to plan in advance as best as possible. Experts recommend setting up alerts so you always know when there is inclement weather or other possible issues making their way close. In your planning phas make a specific point to safeguard your personal and important documents. They should be in an easy to access location for you but protected in a weather proof and locked container that only people you trust can access. 

 

  • Be Careful What You Say Online

 

Social media is a dangerous place to post everything and anything happening in your life because you never know who will see it. There are thieves specifically looking for this information online. You’d be surprised how much they can gather about your vulnerability or access to your home just from small bits of information you share. Just as you shouldn’t post whenever you’re on vacation that your home is empty for thieves – you should not post specifics during a disaster about any vulnerabilities they could potentially exploit. 

 

  • Stop Mail 

 

One of the easiest physical indicators that show off no one may be home or at the property for a while is a stack of amazon boxes sitting on your stoop or a bunch of newspapers laying across the lawn untouched. If you have time and know you will be evacuating your home or away for a long period of time, it makes sense to stop all mail and hold it for pickup at your local post office instead. 

 

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