1. Shred everything
Photo Credit: Milton Cogheil / Alamy Stock Photo
Not just last month’s bank statement, but every item that contains your name, your address or any other information that identifies you or a family member can be used by criminals. Every day, the U.S. Postal Service processes and delivers 493.4 million pieces of mail, many of which have personal information. This might include mail from your child’s school, medical bills, and even junk mail. Sort through your mail right away, and anything you are not going to keep, put in a pile for the shredder.
Note that you don’t have to shred tons of paper—just shred the relevant sections off junk mail and magazines and recycle the rest. Store any sensitive information and documents you want to keep in a secure place in your home, such as a safe.