Every year millions of Americans have their personal information fall into the wrong hands. The impacts can be devastating and the recovery process can be lengthy.

There are some preventative measures we all should be taking; including identifying the unnecessary items in our wallets. When was the last time you reviewed the items in your wallet and took out the items you don’t need on a daily basis?

To safeguard your personal information, consider these seven things you should never carry in your wallet:

  • Social Security Number – Your nine digit Social Security Number makes it much easier for someone that intends to steal your identity. With your Social Security number they could open a loan or a credit card, and even file a tax return in your name.
  • Checks – Your checks include the routing number for your financial institution, your account number, your name and address, and possibly your telephone number. A fraudster could use this information to access your checking account.
  • Numerous Credit Cards – Do you need to keep that store credit card in your wallet at all times? Or just when you are planning a trip to that store? Remember: your credit union has fantastic rates on our credit cards!
  • Multiple Gift Cards – Many of us receive gift cards for birthday and holiday gifts – they can really pile up! If your wallet was to be stolen or lost, you will lose the monetary value of all those cards.
  • Password Cheat Sheets – If a thief were to gain access to your PIN and your passwords for online accounts, you will most certainly face a loss! Your PIN should never be written on the card or kept with the card. When assigning a PIN think of a 4-digit code that will be easy for you to remember without having to keep a paper record.
  • Excess Cash – It may be nice to have cash available at all time – especially for those who use the envelope budget – but carrying excess cash can make you a target for thieves. If you were to pull out a wad of cash to make a purchase, there could be crooks watching your every move. Consider keeping your wallet light with a small amount of cash for emergencies and small purchases.
  • Keys – Spare house keys are the last item on our list. Keys could be an invitation to a thief to steal more from you. While you are searching for your missing keys or filing a police report, thieves could be targeting your home.

Day Air Credit Union works hard to protect their members’ personal information. By eliminating some, if not all of these items, you are reducing the odds of identity theft. Check back with the Day Air blog every week for more money saving tips and tricks.