SOURCE: Adaptive Marketing

September 26, 2007 14:27 ET

Adaptive Marketing LLC Helps Office Workers Guard Against Identity Theft

NORWALK, CT--(Marketwire - September 26, 2007) - Identity theft can strike almost anywhere, reports Adaptive Marketing LLC, a leading Internet marketing company, but when it happens in the office, it can be doubly devastating, since it can raise serious issues of trust regarding the company and one's fellow workers.

When asked why he held up banks, legendary bank robber Willie Sutton allegedly said, "Because that's where the money is." The same philosophy can be applied to identity thieves and offices. The workplace is a prime spot for the types of personal information -- Social Security numbers, home addresses and other distinguishing data -- that ID thieves thrive on. Besides, there is no hard-and-fast profile of an identity thief, and the potential reward for a successful "heist" has been known to entice folks at any and all levels of society, from white-collar executives to down-and-out drifters.

Identity thieves can literally make out like bandits once they have the information they need, so the trick is to deny them access to your information -- in and out of the workplace. To help you keep your office information safe, Adaptive Marketing LLC offers a few guidelines to keep in mind:

-- Your Social Security number deserves privacy. When interviewing for or starting a job, your Social Security number is typically required on applications, W-9 documents, insurance policies and other official papers. Once you're in your job, though, do your best to keep that information -- and any documents that contain it -- under wraps, even if it means questioning established practices like including Social Security numbers on time-off forms. Social Security numbers are the Holy Grail for ID thieves, and trying to keep your own number out of circulation in the office is a worthy and defensible goal.

-- Your work PC really isn't a "personal" computer. Store as little personal information as possible on your office computer. That can be a difficult goal to attain, but remember: You don't own that computer, and your supervisors and other people may very well have access rights to your computer. Also, don't abandon your desk for long chunks of time while your computer is up and running. A tech-savvy identity thief can duplicate and make off with the information on your hard drive faster than you can microwave a bag of popcorn.

-- The password is "secret." The reality is that most folks do use their work computers for personal reasons. If that's the case, the least you can do is set up passwords that will be hard -- if not impossible -- for others to decipher. If someone requests your password to get access to files on your computer, enter the password yourself, and keep an eye on what the user does with it.

-- Protect your personal property. Wallets, purses, insurance forms, mortgage statements and any other items you might frequently or occasionally bring to the office are not automatically safe because the lobby of your building is staffed by security guards. Lock up anything you can't afford to lose, especially if it contains your personal information. If you don't have a safe place for storage, leave the stuff at home.

It's a sad reality that identity theft risks are almost everywhere today, including the workplace. All the same, it's in your best interests to take as many precautionary steps as possible to protect yourself against ID theft, reports Adaptive Marketing LLC.


About Adaptive Marketing LLC

Adaptive Marketing LLC is a leading provider of membership discount programs. Headquartered in Stamford, Conn., Adaptive Marketing LLC is a category leader in both membership and loyalty programs, bringing value direct to consumers through an array of benefits in healthcare, discounts, security, personal property and personals. Visit AdaptiveMarketing.com to find out more information about Adaptive Marketing LLC.