Monday, December 9th, 2013
With holiday shopping now full steam ahead, Veterans Advantage is doing its part to make sure it is a happy and memorable time of year for you. In addition to our ongoing member communications highlighting the latest recommendations for shopping and travel this holiday season, we are also educating military and veteran families about how to shop safely and securely.
To best protect themselves and their families from becoming victims of identity theft this holiday season, Veterans Advantage recommends that all members of the U.S. military community be more vigilant in self-administering the following four protocols:
THE FOUR S’s: CONSUMER TIPS FOR MILITARY FAMILIES THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
1. Be Safe: Never use your Social Security Number, DD214, birth date, mother’s maiden name, or other highly sensitive personal information to obtain a merchant discount. This is considered an ‘overreaching data’ requirement.
2. Be Smart: Don’t be lured by ‘free military discount offers.’ Understand that nothing is free, and that something has to fund the company operations. Personal data is often sold, rented or shared to generate revenues, compromising personal and financial security.
3. Be Suspicious: Dig deep to find how your data is used, and where you data is going. Be especially wary of start-up organizations without an established business history, as they can be more susceptible to bankruptcies, mergers or sale of your data to an unknown party, sometimes outside the country and outside the reach of U.S. law.
4. Be Secure: Data grabs are big business today. Only do business with trusted organizations with a longstanding record of protecting veterans and their interests. Frequent companies that do not require overreaching data or your government issued IDs to access their military discounts.
Tags: DD214, Identity Theft, military discounts, Online Shopping, Social Security Number, Veterans Privacy
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