Just as you’d lock the doors to your home when you travel, it’s wise to lock up your identity, too. Here are ways to protect your identity so you can focus on vacation, not frustration.
BEFORE YOU LEAVE
Give your bank a heads-up: Tell them when and where you’ll be traveling to avoid unexpectedly blocked purchases.
Consider paid protection services: Identity theft protection services alert you if your personal data turns up where it shouldn’t. Some offer free 30-day trials perfect for your trip. Like the service? Keep it!
Pay bills ahead of time: Pay any bills due while you’re gone ahead of time to avoid logging into sensitive accounts on vacation.
Update before you go: Is your device grumbling for operating system updates? Avoid a network you don’t know and do it at home first, using secure, blazing-fast Wintek internet.
Set up a mail hold: Request a mail hold online from the United States Postal Service so it doesn’t stack up at your home.
Keep luggage tags light: Use only your last name and cell phone number. This way, someone can reach you if your luggage goes missing but can’t access your address, email or other personal data.
WHILE YOU’RE GONE
Skimp on social media: Algorithms love vacation photos. But they can also let fraudsters know you’re away. If you must share, keep it to a small group of friends whom you can also contact in case of concerns. You can also ask friends to avoid tagging you in their photos until after you’ve returned.
Be smart about public networks: Don’t share any personal information, access banking sites or pay bills on a public Wi-fi network, and always completely log out of any applicable sites.
Keep documents close to you: If you’re flying, place all important documents in your under-seat carry-on rather than checked or overhead luggage.
Consider a “second wallet”: Copy IDs, list credit card numbers and issuers, and stash some extra cash. If someone’s main wallet or purse goes missing, you’ve got essential information to help you.