According to AAA, 54.3 million Americans will travel more than 50 miles from home this holiday season — a 4.8% increase over last year and the highest amount of holiday travelers in the U.S. since 2005. For those heading off on road trips, flying, and even those staying at home, it’s important to keep you and your safety in mind. Here are some tips to stay on top of protecting your home over the holidays.
Keep Your Mail and Packages Secure
Last year, USA Today reported that 30% of Americans said they’ve had a package stolen and even more say they know someone who’s had it happen. Many households are turning to security options from Ring and Nest in order to capture video at their front door and around their house in case they have a package stolen.
- Ask a trusted neighbor or nearby family member to keep an eye out for any packages delivered while you are out of town and ask them to please collect and hold on to them for you.
- Ask the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) to hold your mail while you’re out of town, which is both free and easily done via its website.
- For the safety of packages delivered while you’re at work, sign up with the USPS for its free Informed Delivery service and receive digital images of items confirmed for delivery to your address on a daily basis.
Mind Your Social Media Privacy Settings
Posting that you’re on vacation can let potential thieves know that your home isn’t being watched. It’s a good idea to make sure that your privacy settings are set so that your vacation updates are not available to the general public. Check your Facebook settings here. Other social media networks like Twitter and Instagram have similar options to ensure your privacy is protected.
Don’t Use Unsecure Wi-Fi When Traveling
It’s tempting to jump online any time you have access to free Wi-Fi, but those networks often aren’t secure. Hackers sometimes even create fake networks that are named similar to a hotel or major landmark in order to trick users into logging on and putting their personal information at risk. If you do have to use public Wi-Fi, don’t do anything that requires you to enter personal information or payment details.
Keep an Extra Close Eye On Statements
It’s a good idea to check your credit card statements every month to make sure nothing unusual shows, but after a big trip, it’s wise to pay extra close attention to your bank and credit card statements. It’s often easy to miss something small when you have extra spending, like around the holidays or during a trip.
Make sure you help protect your identity around the holidays and all year round. Click here to learn more about identity protection.