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A little advice

Get identity theft protection.  Get it today.

It’s no secret I don’t like The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act, but since it’s like a freight train bearing down on us, we might as well be prepared. Part of that preparation means realizing there are unavoidable risks of dealing with large and confusing bureaucracies, new and untried technologies, and a world full of bad guys. We need to take some common sense steps to protect ourselves.

First, because the exchanges themselves are open to all sorts of risks. John McAfee, founder of the eponymous software protection company, says, “I will predict that the loss of income for the millions of Americans who are going to lose their identities — I mean, you can imagine some retired lady in Utah, who’s $75,000 dollars in the bank, saving her whole life — having it wiped out one day because she signed up for ObamaCare. And believe me, this is going to happen millions of times.”

In addition to worrying about phishing and hacking, you also have to worry about bureaucrats sending out unencrypted emails with personal data — including social security numbers, as has already happened to 2,400 people in Minnesota.

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You need to protect yourself.  Even without these additional security risks, identity theft is a pretty big crime. Seven percent of American households are victims every year, averaging a loss of about $5,000. Not to mention time and aggravation fixing the problem and worry knowing your information is now in the wind. So stop procrastinating and get some really inexpensive peace of mind.

We use ID Experts, which is the company Dave Ramsey recommends, but there are others. Some people say you don’t need identity theft, that current consumer protections are sufficient, and that you can be your own credit monitoring agency. Maybe they’re right. But then again, maybe we’re approaching a whole new level of theft. So either get some ID theft protection or start aggressively monitoring your own identity, but do something.

Of course, identity theft will only protect you from the extra-government snoops. Your information entered on the exchanges may be used for law enforcement and auditing purposes, and your emails may be entered into the public record. Identity theft insurance can’t protect you from Uncle Sam.

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