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Recently we received a call from an 82 year old gentleman that made me cringe. He and his wife  had worked hard during their younger years, and then had retired, in their mid 60s, to lead the life of their dreams. A few months ago, he became a victim of identity theft and lost almost everything. The associated stress almost killed him, and today he is trying to recover the damage. It is no surprise that the Bureau of Justice estimates that approximately 17.6 million people, or about 7 percent of U.S. residents age 16 or older, were victims of at least one incident of identity theft in 2014. The rate of yearly increase in identity theft is alarming, and chances are that you too will be a victim at one point in your life if you do not take protection right now.
So, what is identity theft? The Department of Justice defines identity theft and identity fraud as any type of crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person’s personal data in some way that involves fraud or deception, typically for economic gain.
Here are some of the common identity theft situations. You can learn more HERE
Here are some of the ways you can be proactive in preventing identity theft:
1) Review Credit Reports:
There are 3 credit report agencies in US – Experian, Transunion and Equifax. You need to review all three credit reports annually to make sure that there are no falsified information under your name and social security number. There are several companies offering you the service. But, atMayanah, we recommend to get the reports FREE through Federal Trade Commission website.
2) Report Fraudulent Activities:
If you become a victim of identity theft, the next step is to immediately report it  and start the recovery plan. Please note that it takes an average of 200 hours and six months to recover from identity theft..
3) Prevent Identity Theft:
The best scenario is to prevent identity theft before it happens. This will save a lot of time and heart-ache for you and your family. There are several agencies such as Credit Karma that provide Credit Monitoring Services. However, at Mayanah, we recommend you availing Credit Monitoring and Restoration Services. Based on our experience, we highly recommend Zanders Insurancebecause of their low fees and 100% recovery success rate.
If you would like to learn more about preventing online identity theft, please visit PixelPrivacy.com.
Remember that, if your identity is stolen, you are the only one responsible to fix it without a restoration service. Please feel free to contact us for more information or if you need help in reducing your debt and building your wealth.

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