The Best Protection Against Identity Theft is a Really Messed Up Identity
A few days ago, I was sorting through old papers in a drawer, the kind you keep for years because you’re convinced the obscure barcodes or customer numbers yield top secret information about your life. As I ripped them up, I started thinking “You know, if someone goes to the trouble to rifle through the garbage, tape together the millions of little pieces of paper, and steal my identity, they get what they deserve.”
Soon after becoming me, a thief would have an array of lovely experiences to look forward to! He would receive lengthy voicemails from my mother on his answering machine, surprise visits from my drunken ex-boyfriends, and emails from weirdos saying things like “Your book made my girlfriend break up with me so I plan to find you and punish you.” Eventually, the greasy guy from my high school gym class would locate him on Facebook, my Born-Again Aunt would bombard him with Bibles, and the CVS automated pharmacy system would call him in the middle of the night to thank him for his customer loyalty. I predict that it would take about six weeks for the thief to lose his mind, contact me, and beg me to take my identity back. But by then, there won’t be much I can do. My mother will already be on a bus on her way to visit him.
We all need to try to protect ourselves from identity theft through the standard means recommended by experts everywhere (see article link below). But the best protection of all is having an identity that no thief in his right mind would want to steal. When a thief says to his buddies, “No amount of money is worth being that chick for a day, man,” you can sleep at night knowing your shredded bills will make it to the landfill without incident. Copyright © 2009 Alison James