Home > In The Home > Privacy When Moving House

Privacy When Moving House

By: Anna Hinds BA (hons) - Updated: 24 Aug 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Identity Fraud Moving Home Privacy When

43% of cases of identity theft are linked to a previous address. In spite of this a quarter of British people fail to take precautions when they move house. If you’re moving, renting, or buying to let, you should be aware of the risks. Act now to avoid them.

How is Your Privacy Threatened?

When most of us move house, we will probably inform the key people: banks, favourite shops, loyalty schemes, and employers. However, it could be a while before we inform everyone who sends us post. This means there is a lot of paper lying around that has your name and old address on it: easy for a fraudster to pick up and use to apply for a loan. The fraudster simply intercepts the mail on its way back to your old address and continues to draw cash out, while you remain unaware of the trail left behind you.

Even the very careful can become victims of fraudsters. CIFAS (The UK’s fraud prevention service) cites the case of a couple who redirected their mail and removed themselves from the electoral register in their old home, only to find themselves targeted by identity thieves six months after the move. The cunning fraudsters had re-registered the man onto the electoral roll, set up a company in his name and accumulated hefty debts and bills for utilities. The couple only found out when their credit card application was refused.

If you don’t own your home, then be aware of tenants who share a mailbox with you. It could be easy to intercept your post and use it to apply for a loan. Similarly, landlords should be particularly careful: many cases have been recorded where tenants have moved in and adopted the landlord’s identity to become rather better off. Fraud experts at Experian recommend getting a credit check carried out on any potential tenants to make sure they don't have a history of being refused loans.

What can you do?

Use our checklist to make sure your risk is minimised when you move:

Tenants:
  • Ask for a private mailbox and make sure you redirect your mail when you move home.

  • Keep an eye on your own credit record, which will show up any problems.

Landlords:
  • Request a credit check on any potential tenants.

  • If you are concerned about previous or existing tenants, simply check your own credit record. This doesn’t cost much and will reveal any applications that have been made in your name.

  • Ensure that previous tenants have redirected their post (a service offered by the Post Office).

Home-Owners:
  • Before moving, scour the house for personal documents.

  • Redirect the post, giving the names of every family member.

  • Register your old and new addresses with the Mail Preference Service to avoid junk mail.

  • Inform as many companies as you can about your move, particularly your bank and organisations with whom you hold cards or accounts.

  • End utility and telephone contracts before you move out of the house.

  • If putting your belongings into storage, ensure there is nothing personally identifiable in the cases.

  • Keep a close eye on your credit record after moving home.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Han
    Re: Employee Surveillance
    @Sophie - speak to your union rep if you have one.
    19 June 2017
  • Sophie
    Re: Employee Surveillance
    My employer has installed audio listening and recording in the office. Now they want us to sign its ok. We do not want it of course. Our…
    18 June 2017
  • Shots
    Re: Employee Surveillance
    A colleague is being investigated for theft as the employer believes the items he's been accused of stealing locker has been "opened". The…
    12 June 2017
  • Lizzy
    Re: Your Medical Records
    Can my ex who has a daughter who is a nurse look at my medical records
    7 June 2017
  • Tina
    Re: Employee Surveillance
    Hi, I dont get on with my manager and dont trust him whilst having a one to one meeting. He denies things that he has said and I can't…
    28 May 2017
  • Hoody
    Re: Do They Have the Right to Use My Photo on Website?
    Can a work use a photo against you
    28 May 2017
  • Matt
    Re: Your Medical Records
    @Jennie - sounds like a mistake has been made somewhere along the line - but what that mistake is, is anyone's guess.
    26 May 2017
  • Jennie
    Re: Your Medical Records
    Hi just had a phone call from my doctors saying there has been an admistration problem with my records anyone know what that means please?
    26 May 2017
  • Jayb118
    Re: Employee Surveillance
    Hi I just wanted to know where I stand regrading cctv in my work truck?? We have 6 cameras I'm fine with them all to be honest as it's good…
    16 May 2017
  • DannyB
    Re: Employee Surveillance
    A colleague I fell out with is keeping an observation log on me, from when she sees me.., including in my private life. My employers have…
    12 May 2017
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the YourPrivacy website. Please read our Disclaimer.