Published: September 2014
Whether you’re traveling for leisure or business, it’s important to be aware that threats to your identity are all around. According to The Better Business Bureau, thieves know that people are easily distracted while rushing through busy airports, crowded sidewalks and other chaotic places. When you’re on vacation, you may get caught up in taking photos, navigating unfamiliar streets, marveling at the sights — and that’s often when thieves wait to steal your wallet and important documents, says the BBB. Even if your identity documents aren't stolen, you could lose or misplace them, creating an opportunity for them to fall into the wrong hands.
Faced with the loss of your identity documents, you may not know where to turn — especially in a foreign country. According to IDT911, many identity restoration coverage policies give you access to a fraud specialist who can help you recover the documents or vital credit/bank cards you need.
Identity restoration coverage can also:
- Work with your credit card companies and banks to alert them of potential fraud on your accounts
- Provide financial reimbursement for costs you may incur for restoring your identity or credit history
With identity restoration coverage, you may have an easier time identifying any fraud that may have taken place on your accounts and get assistance in replacing the vital documents you've lost during your travels. This means more time for you to enjoy the destination and less time sitting on the phone tracking down your documents and information.
Of course, you can take measures to prevent theft or loss of your identity documents, as well.
1. Try to be aware of your surroundings, especially if you’re in a crowd. The Better Business Bureau suggests you carry your wallet, passport and other important documents in an interior pocket.
2. The BBB also suggests you travel only with the documents, credit cards, etc., that you need and leave the rest at home.
3. The FBI recommends protecting yourself by not providing any credit card or financial information to any person or company you’re not familiar with. Also, make sure you’re dealing with a reputable company when making credit card purchases in person and ensure that clerks are not misusing your credit or debit card.
4. In addition to watching out for your paper documents, the Better Business Bureau also cautions against using Wi-Fi networks while traveling. Wi-Fi networks in hotels, restaurants or airports may have limited security, leaving your personal information — and identity — up for grabs.
5. Consider purchasing identity restoration coverage so you will be protected in case your documents do get lost or your personal information is stolen while traveling.
Be sure to take every precaution possible to protect your identity when traveling. And, consider packing extra peace of mind by calling an agent for a quote on how much identity restoration may cost you.