This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

'Tis The Season: Keep An Eye On Your Credit Cards And Budgets While Shopping

Protect your identity and pocketbook, whether you are in-line or on-line

 - In-line? 5 Tips to Keep Your ID Safe in Public  - On-line? 5 Tips to Keep Your ID Safe Online   - ID Theft Victim? 3 Contacts You Need to Make

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich., Nov. 25, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- This holiday season will have the traditional masses of shoppers taking to area malls and stores, while many will opt to shop online from their couch. Whichever way you choose to shop, GreenPath Debt Solutions, a nationwide, nonprofit credit counseling and education organization, wants to remind shoppers that identity thieves could be lurking, waiting for a slip-up and an opportunity to steal their identity.

"Technology today goes well beyond pick pocketing or taking a purse," said Katie Moore , GreenPath Debt Solutions counselor. "Identity thieves have so much technology at their fingertips to steal credit card numbers and build a personal profile on an individual. If you let your guard down, even for a moment, you could have your identity stolen."

5 TIPS – KEEPING YOUR ID SAFE IN PUBLIC

GreenPath provides 5 quick tips for consumers on protecting their identity this holiday season and throughout the year:

  1. Before you leave your house, take out the credit cards that you know you will not be using.
  2. Copy the front and back information on your card , so you have contact information quickly in case your card is stolen. 
  3. Do not carry your Social Security card with you . That number is vital in opening new credit accounts.
  4. Watch where you leave your card when you shop . "Don't leave your credit card on the counter with people around," said Moore. "A simple click of a camera phone or good memory can capture your name, card number and expiration date."  A thief can then use that number instantly to buy goods online.
  5. Keep your receipts in your purse or wallet, not in the bag. This will make it easier to track your merchandise spending and help you to stay within your budget. 

5 TIPS – KEEPING YOUR IDENTITY SAFE ON-LINE

If you are shopping online this season, here are 5 quick tips to keep your identification safe:

  1. Always initiate the transaction yourself. Do not open a store's website through a received email. Physically type in the web address of the outlet and look around carefully to make sure it is the actual website.
  2. When entering credit card information as part of transaction, make sure the web address starts with a secure extension, shown as https://
  3. If you shop online in a public location, like at a library, make sure you log out and click the "back" button, when you are finished with a shopping session.
  4. Shopping at the coffee house? Use their approved, secure wi-fi server.
  5. Use your credit card wisely when shopping online. The added convenience of shopping from your couch might cause you to drop your guard. Be aware of your online surroundings at all times.

3 TIPS – CONTACTS TO MAKE IF YOU ARE A VICTIM OF ID THEFT

GreenPath gives three contacts you need to make, if you become a victim of identity theft:

  1. Contact the three credit bureaus and tell them that you have been a victim of identity theft. Equifax fraud division 800-525-6285 www.fraudalerts.equifax.com Experian fraud division 888-397-3742 www.experian.com/fraud  Trans Union fraud division 800-680-7289 www.transunion.com
  2. Contact your creditors directly and ask to speak to someone in the security department. Freeze the existing account.
  3. Contact local law enforcement and get a police report. This will serve as documentation that a crime has occurred.

"It can be a time-consuming process to clear your name when you have been a victim of identity theft," said Moore. "By taking some preventive measures, you can ensure a smooth shopping experience on Black Friday and throughout the holiday season."

Keep up with GreenPath Debt Solutions on social media at www.facebook.com/greenpathdebt and www.twitter.com/greenpathdebt .

For more information, log on to www.greenpath.org or call (866) 648-8122.

GreenPath Debt Solutions is a nationwide, non-profit financial organization that assists consumers with credit card debt, housing debt and bankruptcy concerns. Our customized services and attainable solutions have been helping people achieve their financial goals since 1961. Headquartered in Farmington Hills, Michigan, GreenPath operates more than 50 full-time branch offices in 12 states.  They also deliver licensed services throughout the United States over the Internet and telephone. GreenPath is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).  Our professional counselors are certified by the NFCC, and we are accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA).  For more information, visit us at www.greenpath.org .

SOURCE GreenPath Debt Solutions

Copyright 2011 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,399.67 +19.26 0.12%
S&P 500 1,904.01 +17.25 0.91%
NASDAQ 4,316.0740 +57.6360 1.35%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs