An article by Frank W. Abagnale, the lecturer and consultant, entitled 14 tips to avoid identity theft details some good advice for protecting your identity.
1. Guard your Social Security number. It is the key to your credit report and banking accounts and is the prime target of criminals.
2. Monitor your credit report. It contains your SSN, present and prior employers, a listing of all account numbers, including those that have been closed, and your overall credit score. After applying for a loan, credit card, rental or anything else that requires a credit report, request that your SSN on the application be truncated or completely obliterated and your original credit report be shredded before your eyes or returned to you once a decision has been made. A lender or rental manager needs to retain only your name and credit score to justify a decision.