Great personal privacy resource you should know.
By suncpo on Jan 17, 2007
I am taking time this year to be sure to pass on good stuff that I see to as many people as I can. We as a data governance community talk to ourselves too much & not enough to people who may be getting interested in this topic for the first time or who may have to care because they have become aware of the value of personal information & the many ways in which it can be exploited for good and for ill.
If you have not done so already, take a look at privacyrights.org. Beth Givens leads a team of consumer facing advocates/ teachers/ watchdogs who focus on identity theft issues for consumers. They put out a great newsletter that always has good information and important reminders regarding how individuals can take more control over their info to make it tougher for bad guys to steal your most important assets, info about you.
Take a look at this months offering. I did not write a lick of it. All rights belong to the good folks that did. If you like it, think about heading over to see Ms. Givens & her team & signing up for her newsletter. You will be glad you did:
"ALERT: It's Tax Time -- Take These Extra Precautions
with Your Mail.
During the month of January, check your mailbox for
information notices from organizations that have made
taxable payments to you during the previous year.
The most well-known information notice is the W-2 form
which reports your taxable wages. Another common
information notice is the 1099 which reports payments
of interest, dividends, unemployment compensation,
Social Security benefits, and pension income.
While these information notices are essential for preparing
your taxes, they also are a treasure trove for identity
thieves. A typical information notice has your non-truncated
Social Security number as well as the name of your employer,
your bank, mutual fund, or stock broker. Some payers also
include your account numbers on the notice, creating a gold
mine for identity thieves.
Here are some suggestions to help prevent these notices
from getting into the wrong hands:
-- Use a mailbox that locks or consider having your mail
sent to a Post Office Box.
-- Try to retrieve your mail as soon as possible after it
has been delivered. Never leave it in your mailbox overnight.
-- If you go on vacation, have your mail held at the Post
Office, or have a trusted neighbor retrieve it.
-- If you have moved during the year, notify any payers of
your new address. Do not rely on the Postal Service’s
change of address service
Here’s an additional tip for when you are ready to file
your tax return. Mail it at the Post Office or at an official
USPS blue mail collection box BEFORE the last collection time.
Do not put such mail into a mailbox if there are no more pickups
In other words, don't leave your mail in a collection box
overnight. Thieves have actually been known to steal the
entire box by chaining it to a pickup truck, yanking it off
its moorings, lifting it into the truck bed, and speeding
off into the night.
Never leave important outgoing mail in your mailbox or at
any other unsecured location for your letter carrier to pickup.
Anyone might come along and steal your mail along with your
Good info & a reminder that the on line and off line worlds are connected by a gossamer thin thread.