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Losing or having your wallet stolen can be more than an inconvenience; it could leave you vulnerable to identity fraud and compromise. Criminals can use stolen credit cards and ID to open bank accounts, obtain payday loans or file taxes under your name - to protect yourself, a wallet audit and practice good wallet habits can help. Don’t carry too many cards Your wallet's contents determine your susceptibility to identity theft. Credit and debit cards, forms of identification and emergency contact info all become targets for thieves looking to gain entry. An overflowing wallet increases your likelihood of identity fraud, and rectifying any damage could take hours of phone calls with card issuers, banks and government agencies. A stolen wallet provides criminals with valuable personal data they can use to open new accounts in your name and file tax returns under your name. Experts advise having two credit cards; your primary and a back-up. A backup card may come in handy should your primary one become unavailable, or should spending exceed your limit. Before leaving the house, make sure to remove all cards you won't use immediately - this makes it much harder for thieves to scan your wallet for information such as account numbers and PINs - some even carry blank checks! Reduce this risk by not carrying multiple credit and debit cards at once and only using them when shopping at certain establishments. If necessary, purchase a slim wallet with RFID protection to safeguard your personal information and stay secure while out and about. As part of your travel safety strategy, it is wise to avoid carrying your passport in your wallet at all times, particularly when travelling. A recent Experian study found that 50% of respondents failed to remove unnecessary cards from their wallet before traveling - leaving them vulnerable to identity thieves who can use this data against them by engaging in identity fraud schemes and scams using your personal details such as passport and personal data for profit. It would be prudent for travelers leaving passports at hotel safes or locked into checked luggage - to protect against this. Keep it out of sight Lost or stolen wallets can be an ordeal to deal with; especially those containing credit cards and Social Security numbers. Unfortunately, however, it happens all too frequently - that's why it is essential that your wallet stay hidden out of sight by not placing it in front of your pants, not carrying it with you everywhere, or having your husband hide your wallet when going out to lunch together. Stealers could use your credit cards and Social Security number to open new accounts, get payday loans, file tax returns or even steal your identity - an estimated incident occurred every 3 seconds in 2019. At Discover(r) Aura, we offer $1 Million ID Theft Insurance with every wallet plan as well as wallet trackers and free credit monitoring service to protect yourself before identity theft even occurs - enroll now to start protecting both yourself and wallet! It only takes minutes! Get identity theft protection As more and more individuals fall prey to identity fraud and scams, it is more essential than ever that they receive adequate protection. While many identity theft protection services only provide damage control after a breach has happened, the best ones provide proactive monitoring that alerts you of potential issues before they impact your bank accounts or credit scores. Identity theft protection services should include powerful digital security tools to keep hackers at bay. These include military-grade VPN that shields all of your devices and data from potential hacking attempts, antivirus protection and safe browsing tools that block malicious websites - protecting you from being taken to potentially hazardous or fraudulent websites that could damage or steal personal information from you or take control of your device. In addition, 24/7 support from Fraud Resolution Specialists can provide additional assistance if any identity theft or fraud issues arises, helping work with banks, lenders or credit bureaus towards resolution of any issues related to identity theft or fraud occurrence. These protection services often feature mobile apps to make monitoring account activity simple, while offering comprehensive credit monitoring features across all three major credit bureaus - alerting you of any changes such as address changes, new account openings or the sale of data on dark web. Finding an identity theft protection service to meet your needs and budget depends entirely on you. Plans exist that cover one or all major identity-theft crimes, as well as providing helpful features like password managers that generate unique, complex passwords for all of your accounts stored securely in an encrypted vault; family plans with parental controls also are an option. Identity theft doesn't just involve credit card or bank account data being stolen, there are also other methods criminals can use your personal data against you to steal both money and reputation, such as through phishing scams, medical identity theft, social media account takeovers or tax or mortgage fraud schemes. Therefore it is critical that both yourself and wallet are secured using an effective identity theft protection app.