5 Ways to Recover from ID theft: What to do if your Wallet or Handbag gets Stolen

It happened. Your Wallet, handbag and/or purse got stolen. It happens to a number of people worldwide, and now it has happened to you. Take a moment to identify the steps you ought to take immediately:

1. Contact your bank/financial institutions immediately: First things first, people are likely to go after your funds. Call your bank and tell them to freeze your accounts/cancel your credit and debit cards. This will ensure that they can track card movements and ensure that there is minimal damage to your savings.

credit cards
Thieves are usually after your money, don’t let them get it!

2. Call the Police: Lodge a complaint with the police and keep documents where ever possible. If you’re lucky, they will be able to apprehend the thief. Ensure that you get a copy of the police report.

3. Call other companies whose services you use: This may be a loyalty card, gym membership, library card… anything. This is partly because you don’t want anybody impersonating you, and the other reason is that when notified, you could track the thief’s movements based on how they use your cards.

Pick up the phone & take immediate action

4. If you had keys: change your locks: Its better to be safe than sorry but if you had a pair of keys in your wallet, the thief not only knows where you live, but also has the means to get inside your home. Be wise and change locks as soon as you can.

5. Get a copy of your driving license and NIC: This is arguably the biggest hassle, but these are important documents which you will need in Sri Lanka. If you are unfortunate enough to lose these documents, consider opting for the one day service. Yes, its more expensive and you will need to be physically present, but the sooner you get these compulsory documents back, the better it is for you.

We honestly hope that you don’t need to use this advice, but please remember these tips… just in case

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.

5 Easy Steps to Prevent Identity Theft

Identity Theft is an area which most of us don’t think about… until we are victims of it ourselves. That said, it doesn’t take a lot of effort to protect yourself. Check out our 5 step checklist below:

1. Review financial statements & discard them properly

Shred or tear up the following documents before you throw them away: debit/credit card statements, old ATM cards, bank deposit slips and other documents which contain details about your finances. Furthermore, look at your statements to see if there are any financial irregularities (ie: excessive spending, transferring of money to other accounts etc). If you spot any, notify your bank immediately.

Note: If these are documents which you need to keep, ensure that you store them in a safe place.

If possible, shred documents which you don’t need

2. Be smart with your behaviour online

  •  Watch for SPAM. Here’s a good rule of thumb to observe if something is SPAM or not: if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Sent it straight to your junk folder.
  • Where possible, visit secure websites: (look for an “https” in the address bar or search for a padlock. This indicates that the website you are on is secure. Banking websites and online shopping sites like amazon & ebay have this level of security in order to protect your information.
  • Never send credit card information over email-especially the 3 or 4 digit security code at the back of your card.
  • If you can afford it, keep your computer protected with good anti-virus/anti-spyware protection.
Visit secure sites (with a padlock or https://) whenever possible

3. Get a Credit report

This is a summary of your credit score and impacts your ability to purchase a loan for a vehicle, house etc. Make it a point to get a credit report annually. Dont know how to get one? try this link from the Credit Information Bureau (CRIB). This lets you keep track of your credit reports and you can monitor any activity which seems out of the ordinary

4. Watch out for Fraudulent calls/scams

If you ever receive an email or phone call from an institution you do business with (university, charity, bank, insurance company etc), DO NOT give out personal information to the caller as the request may not be legitimate. Ask for the person’s name and branch. Even If you believe that the call is genuine, call the company back on their hotline and double check if they did send a call/email. Its much better to be safe than sorry.

5. Create Strong Passwords 

Make it a point to create strong passwords; using a mix of letters and numbers will ensure that hackers find it harder to break into your accounts. thereby improving your chances of preventing identity theft. Not sure how to do so? Check out the image below:

Here’s what a strong password looks like

Enjoyed this article? Give us your best suggestions on preventing ID theft in the comments below and don’t forget to subscribe for more articles!

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.