GARDINER – With the Christmas shopping season under way, state officials are warning Mainers to take precautions to avoid identity theft scams.
The Department of Professional and Financial Regulation cautions consumers that the shopping season is a prime time for identity theft. Superintendent Lloyd LaFountain notes that the economic downturn may spur a rise in financial crimes.
Officials say consumers should avoid carrying their Social Security number and should take only the credit cards they need.
People also should shred any mail that contains personal information, be suspicious of solicitors and use extra caution on the Internet.