Friday Grab Bag – 1/15/2010

It’s Friday again, and that means it’s time for the weekly SpendOnLife grab bag! Here we share some of the week’s more interesting tidbits from the world of identity theft and credit. Enjoy!

Identity theft and the 2010 census

You’re very likely to receive a census form in the mail or have a census worker knock on your door this year — the government is launching a massive 2010 initiative to account for every man, woman, and child living in the country. But this legitimate undertaking also serves as the perfect way for fraudsters to get at your personal information. Follow these tips from Wisebread to keep your identity secure during the census.

Identity theft during tax time

You’re likely to get at least one or two tax forms this year that show your full Social Security number and/or bank account number. These are like gold to identity thieves, so guard them carefully. Follow these tips from David Randall at Forbes to keep your personal information safe during tax season.

Dental office worker steals patients’ identities

This seriously scares me…workers in every medical office I have ever visited have access to everything from my date of birth and SSN to the credit card number I used for my co-pay. And this news story proves that I’m not just being paranoid…identity theft in medical offices really does happen. At least in this case justice was served.

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Medieval Times includes credit card expiration date on receipts

Medieval Times isn’t up to the times, apparently, when it comes to complying with the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA). The popular dinner and tournament show is being sued for not removing credit card expiration dates on receipts, which is against the law. Merchants are legally required to truncate your credit card number to the last five digits, and to delete the expiration date.┬áCheck your receipts to make sure merchants are up to snuff.

Blippy shares your shopping habits via Twitter

I don’t get it: Why would I want to advertise to the world that my recent Amazon shopping expedition cost me $149.76? But that’s exactly what Blippy does. Blippy is a new, free service that shares all of your credit card purchases via your Twitter account, so that others can know almost instantly when you charge a $3.79 latte at Starbucks or buy a $330 handbag from Nordstrom. Surprisingly, 5,000 people are already using Blippy. Welcome to the age of too much information.

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