The latest statistics show that around 75 percent of our daily mail is made up of junk mail.
This often includes credit card solicitations, advertising and other junk mail we have no interest in and end up discarding unread.
That is why more and more people are taking steps to remove themselves from bulk mailing lists.
It is possible to add your name and address to an anti-solicitation list in order to reduce the amount of junk mail which you receive.
Several new websites have emerged which allow you to control what you receive in the mail using a variety of methods.
As well as being able to notify contacts of a change of address, sites such as Updater.com can be used to reduce or stop unwanted mail. This not only help the environment by reducing paper mail, but can also help to reduce your risk if identity theft by stopping pre-approved credit card applications.
One way to ensure you do not receive pre-approved credit card junk mail is to visit the official consumer credit reporting industry website optoutprescreen.com. The site allows consumers to opt out of receiving pre-approved credit card offers for up to 5 years.
Identity thieves are well known for indulging in ‘dumpster diving’ where they dig through trash for letters containing personal information which can be used to steal your identity. Discarded bills or pre-approved credit card offers often contain all the information a thief needs to misuse your name including addresses, social security numbers and account information. You can protect yourself by shredding bills and opting out of receiving offers through the mail.
It is not just thrown away junk mail which puts your identity at risk. Reports show that re-routing of mail is increasingly becoming one of the most common threats in regard to identity theft. It is easily accomplished by simply changing and address with the U.S. Postal Service.
The best course of action is to limit the amount of personal information carried through the mail. The majority of accounts now push online or paperless billing as the preferred option and not only is this more environmentally friendly, but it is also much more secure.
Wherever possible you should opt in to paperless billing and also make bill payments online. New regulations mean that online banking must increase their security procedures making it a safer option all around. Doing this along with opting out of unsolicited mail will help reduce the risk of identity theft.