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Travel

Protecting your home isn’t just about changing the batteries anymore

Before you leave for vacation, protect your home and your money

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada

Toronto ON – A recent TD Canada Trust poll found many Canadians are leaving themselves open to fraud and theft on a daily basis. In fact, 87 per cent of respondents are concerned about debit card fraud and 91 per cent were afraid of identity theft. With March Break around the corner, many families will be going on vacation leaving their bank accounts and homes vulnerable to thieves.

"It is important to notify your banks, credit card providers, home alarm monitoring company and any other resources before you leave for vacation," says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc. "Returning to find your house vandalized, computer hacked or bank accounts compromised are the last things you want to welcome you home from vacation."

March is Fraud Prevention Month, and Consolidated Credit wants to remind Canadians leaving for vacation to reduce their risk of fraud and theft by implementing these safety tips:

  1. Computer – reduce the risk of professional hackers gaining access to your personal information by:
    1. Signing out of all websites you visit regularly
    2. Terminating connections to online banking sites
    3. Using a lock function with a password-protection feature on start-up
    4. Making sure your security software is up-to-date
    5. Turning off all computers
  1. Home – protect your most important asset by:
    1. Asking neighbours to be on the look out for suspicious activity
    2. Contacting your home alarm monitoring company
    3. Using automatic timers for lights and radios
    4. Placing all valuables out of sight, not only jewellery but laptops, small electronic devices, etc.
  1. Bank account(s) – prevent your account(s) from being frozen by:
    1. Advising the bank you will be away on vacation
    2. Letting the bank know you are leaving the province or country
    3. Locking up your cheque book and any debit cards you will not be using
    4. Reducing the withdrawal limit at the ATM
  1. Credit Card(s) – avoid being a victim of credit card fraud by:
    1. Notifying your provider you will be away and of the location of your vacation
    2. Recording your card number(s) and keeping it in a safe place in case it is lost or stolen
    3. Locking up any credit card(s) you won't be needing
Consolidated Credit's publication Identity Theft is available free to download.



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Press Inquiries:

Kylie-Anne Doerner
Manager of Community and Public Relations
kdoerner@consolidatedcredit.ca
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.
Toll Free: 1-800-656-4120 x 1057

We are a proud member of the Canadian Association of Credit Counselling Services (CACCS), the national voice for not-for-profit credit counselling services. As a CACCS member, you can trust that our trained credit counsellors strive to provide the best in professional, independent and unbiased personal finance services. We’ve helped hundreds of thousands of Canadians find relief from debt. Call us today to find out if we can help you.

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Consolidated Credit Counseling of Canada is proud to be a member and support the Toronto Board of Trade. Founded in 1845, the Toronto Board of Trade is Canada’s largest local chamber of commerce. We share their vision, passion and commitment to serving the community and to foster economic and social welfare of the City of Toronto. Call us today and see what we can do for you.

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