There’s an increase in the number of identity theft reports during the holiday shopping season and putting your credit information on the internet to place an order can make it even easier to steal. A recent survey done by IBM shows that nearly 14% of Americans have had their personal or credit card information stolen, one in ten of them during the holiday season.
David Mackey is the Director of Security Intelligence with IBM. He says identity theft is a rising concern with retailers as well as consumers. Seventy-five-percent of shoppers surveyed said they’re very concerned about having their credit-card or personal information stolen this holiday season. IBM’s working on that, he says. Mackey says it’s not just the holiday season, it’s something people need to take a proactive approach to year-round. He says it just so happens that during holidays there’s a spike in Internet commerce, but they intend to help retailers try and keep consumers safe.
Mackey says if you don’t do anything else to protect yourself, following two simple guidelines will keep Iowa buyers relatively safe while shopping on-line or in the stores. He says you should shop with trusted retailers. Businesses that have a store located in your town may also have a website, and there’s a good chance since they’re also local they will be accountable to their consumers. He says you also have to open that credit-card and bank statement promptly when it arrives, and look it over carefully.
Make sure the charges on there are accurate. Mackey says most credit-card companies will forgive a certain amount of debt if your credit card was used fraudulently. Mackey says timing is of the essence, though. If an unknown transaction goes unreported for any significant amount of time, your financial institution will most likely not reimburse those funds. For more information on how to stay safe from identity theft or fraud, surf to IBM-dot-com-slash-security.