Copy Everything in Your Wallet to Make Theft Recovery a Little Easier
Making copies of everything in your wallet can help investigators in the event it gets stolen
Have you ever lost a credit card only to find that you don't know how to contact your bank? Did you know that there is an easy way to make reporting stolen cards easier?
Most people aren't able to list the entire contents of their wallets and most certainly can't remember bank phone numbers. But it's very easy to list the contents of your wallet and contact your banks if you have made a photocopy of the front and back of every card you have.
Don't have a secure photocopier? Take a photo of everything with your smart phone. You'll want a complete list of everything, including your driver license, credit cards, bank cards, insurance cards, discount cards, etc.
Making several good, color copies of everything inside your wallet won't prevent your wallet from being stolen. But it will give the police a good starting point when investigating your case. All of your account information and numbers are right there. Many people don't think about copying the store discount cards. But what if a criminal is stupid enough to use one?
Police can track that person down to the store in which they used it, leading to the possibility of catching that person. Police officers can't charge that person with possession of stolen property for using the discount card if it isn't reported along with the rest of your wallets contents.
Here are some things you should do to prevent identity theft:
- Cancel your credit cards immediately if your wallet is stolen.
- Never carry a Social Security card.
- If you think your social security number may have been compromised, call each of the three major credit reporting organizations immediately to create a free fraud alert.
The key is having the toll-free numbers and your card numbers handy so you know whom to call. That's where your copies come in handy. File a police report immediately in the jurisdiction where it was stolen, proving to credit providers that you were diligent in trying to prevent any subsequent fraud.
Doing so only increases the chances that the card and number can fall into the wrong hands.
The alert means that any company checking your credit knows your information was stolen and must call you first at the number you provide before authorizing ANY credit.
The key, of course, is to avoid becoming a victim of crime. Never leave your items out in plain sight, especially in a car; it only takes a moment for a thief to "smash-and-grab" anything in your vehicle, be it a wallet, cell phone, or portable navigation system. Never carry more money than you need for a particular trip, and never let your belongings out of your sight.
Here are the phone numbers for the three major credit reporting companies and the Social Security Administration Fraud Line: