Common Financial Security Mistakes Made by Consumers

January 12, 2015

Making mistakes is a natural part of being human; we have all done it. However, it is important to understand that the consequences of certain mistakes can have all kinds of unintended consequences; these consequences have the power to harm you, your family, and your financial security. Identifying and correcting these mistakes is the first step towards increasing your own personal security and the security of the people you care about.

 

Carrying Sensitive Financial Documents Around With You

This mistake is first on the list because it is so common. Virtually everyone carries around bank statements, bills, medical invoices, credit card paperwork, and other financial records with them at one time or another. This might be unavoidable if you are delivering paperwork to someone or in the process of mailing a bill. The potential for risk arises when you habitually carry store these and similar items in your purse, wallet, briefcase, backpack, or tote. A thief who steals a personal bag with any of these documents will have access to much more than your payment cards and personal electronic devices. They will have access to lots of sensitive financial information that can be used for their own gain. You, the victim of this crime, will be left dealing with the damage.

Carrying Too Many Cards in Your Wallet

Most Americans have multiple credit cards; there is a good chance that you have at least two in your wallet at any time. Many people justify this habit by saying that one card is for general use and the other is for backup or for emergencies only. While having a backup credit card can be a sound financial strategy, it is not a good idea to carry it around with you at all times. Infrequently used cards can be stolen and used for a long period of time before their owners are aware. The theft of frequently used cards is generally noticed much faster, within just a few days or even a few hours.

Instead of carrying around credit cards that you are not intending to use, keep them at home in a safe place. You can store your extra payment cards in a locked filing box, a secure file cabinet, a home safe, or similar easily secured private locations.

Protecting Payment Cards From Physical Theft Only

If a card has been stolen, it can cause significant financial harm. What many consumers do not realize is that some credit card-based financial information can be accessed without the card being physically touched. RFID scanners can be used by criminals to access people’s payment card information through proximity alone; there is no need to touch the card at all. This type of data theft is not limited to credit cards. A thief with the right kind of scanner could activate the RFID chips in all kinds of personal items, including:

• Credit and debit cards
• Gift cards
• Driver’s licenses
• Passports
• Key cards used by apartment complexes, hotels, and businesses

Protecting Yourself

The Stealth Card helps protect all RFID-inclusive cards and personal items. This card is engineered to block scanner signals that would exploit the electronic information on the cards. The Stealth Card makes it easy to correct this common consumer mistake.