An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

News | Sept. 12, 2017

National Preparedness Month: Prevent identity theft

DLA Troop Support Public Affairs


Recent headlines of data breaches of private companies and government agencies should prompt everyone to be vigilant with their personal information.

There are multiple ways someone can become a victim of identity theft:

  • Child ID Theft – Identity thieves can target children’s identification numbers and use them to open credit accounts and other activities without being detected for many years. By the time the children grow up, they may find years of damage have been done using their identity.
  • Tax ID Theft – Identity thieves can file false tax returns using stolen social security numbers.
  • Medical ID Theft – Identity thieves can get medical care using your medical insurance identification information, including Medicare information.
  • Senior ID Theft – Senior citizens are vulnerable to identity theft through frequent interactions with the health care system, increasing the risk of personal information and insurance information being exposed and used fraudulently.
  • Social ID Theft – Your name, photos and personal information can be used by identity thieves to impersonate you on social media accounts to defraud others using your likeness.

There are steps that you can take to help prevent ID theft:

  • Secure your social security number by leaving it in a secure place, don’t carry it with you and only giving it out if it’s absolutely necessary.
  • Never respond to unsolicited requests by phone, in person or online for personal information, including full name, birthdate, social security number, bank account or credit card information.
  • Place your mail on hold if you will not be able to collect it for several days as your personal information can be obtained by people stealing your mail.
  • Constantly review bank and credit card statements to ensure they match with your actual activity and that no new accounts have been opened without your authorization.
  • Pay attention to billing cycles. If bills or financial statements are late, contact the sender to ensure that they have the correct information.
  • Enable security features on your cellular phone and other devices, particularly if you have sensitive information on it like personal information, bank information, logins and passwords.
  • Use complex passwords that cannot be easily guessed and change your passwords frequently in case a company becomes the victim of a data breach that can expose your login information.

You can also read more about how you to secure your personal information on people-search websites.