Identity theft is becoming much more common, and seniors are often targets. People assume that seniors aren’t checking their credit or accounts very often so they are easy to steal from. But seniors can help protect themselves from identity theft and fraud just by taking some simple precautions. Their elder care providers could assist them with the process.
Whether shopping online or using social media or just living their lives these are easy things seniors can do to help prevent identity theft:
Shred All Personal Documents
Seniors should be shredding all of their mail and other documents that could contain personal information before throwing them away. Seniors who find it difficult to work a shredder can get help from elder care. Elder care providers can work with seniors to manage their accounts, shred their documents, and make sure that their vital information is protected from any potential threats. Seniors that don’t have shredders can take documents to any office store and pay a small fee to have their documents shredded there.
Monitor Credit And Bank Accounts
Seniors should be regularly looking over their bank accounts and credit accounts. If you’re worried that your senior parent isn’t monitoring their accounts or doesn’t really seem too interested in managing their accounts get yourself added as a cosigner on your senior parent’s accounts so that you can check them often. You also may want to get credit alerts put on the accounts so that if someone tries to access them or there is any unusual activity you will get an alert. Your senior loved one also may want to hire an accountant or personal finance manager to take care of their accounts.
Don’t Carry Important Documents
Seniors should never carry important documents on their person. Sometimes seniors will carry a passport, Social Security card, and other documents in case they need them while they are shopping or at the doctor’s. But those documents can be lost or stolen easily. Seniors don’t need to carry their important documents when they are out and about. But you should have copies of them in the hospital bag that you have packed at all times. That way if you do have to go to the hospital during a medical emergency for the senior parent you will have copies of any documents that are needed.
Elder Care Aides can Help Change Passwords Frequently
Most people hate changing their passwords because it’s difficult to remember what passwords are ging used on what sites and what passwords have been used before. It doesn’t help that every website seems to have different password requirements. But it’s very important that seniors change their passwords for their social media, banks, and medical accounts often so that if there is a data breach their data is protected. An elder care provider can keep a running list of the most current passwords next to the computer so that if you or your senior loved one needs to access them they are easily accessible. Use a small notebook to store the passwords and that will help keep track of what passwords have already been used.