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Security & privacy

3 ways cybercriminals can hurt you once they get your leaked home address

Presented by Home Title Lock

Presented by Home Title Lock

Sign up at today to protect your home, and don’t forget to let them know Kim sent you!

Your home address might be private, depending on how proactive you are. Tap or click here to remove your private information from three sites that reveal a ton of your sensitive information. A leaked home address exposes you to a few especially heinous cybersecurity threats.

To make matters worse, your home address could be up for sale. Just think about how many security breaches occur every day. Companies you trust with your private data are invaded all the time — and when hackers sneak in, they steal customer data and sell it on the Dark Web.

To understand how at-risk you are, head to a free database like Have I Been Pwned? Or you can check out this guide to fully understand how a leaked home address affects you. (Spoiler alert: It wreaks havoc on your life.)

1. Some criminals will show up at your front door

You might think scammers are threats that only contact you from afar. You’d be wrong.

Scammers are getting more daring every day. In one fake home energy auditor scheme, criminals appear on your doorstep. They pretend to be an official from your utility company. They might even say they’re with the energy division of your local government.

The crook tries to convince you that your energy bill is too high. They insist on touring your home so they can help you save money. Once you’re on the hook, they promise to install filters, thermostats or other equipment that can “reduce your bill.”

Don’t let them dazzle you. Take the bait, and they’ll whip out a contract that requires a home audit fee and your banking details. Here’s what you can do about this nasty scam.

2. A leaked home address exposes you to extortion and blackmail, too

Once a bad guy knows where you live, they have all the power. They feel entitled to threaten you. For example, they might say, “If you don’t wire me $5,000, I’ll expose your home address.”

They try to scare victims into handing over money, whether it’s through wire transfers or gift card scams. Remember: Whenever a stranger asks you to pay them through a gift card, it’s probably a scam. Criminals love them because they’re anonymous, easy to buy and have fewer protections for buyers than other payment options.

Extortion and blackmail are considerable threats to vulnerable people. Instead of contacting the police, they might be urged to give in to the criminal’s demands.

Remember to always reach out to the professionals when you’re being extorted. Succumbing to a scammer encourages them to hurt other people in the future. Here are three immediate steps to take if you fell for a scam.

3. Redirected mail and stolen identity

You also have to watch out for identity theft. Someone who knows your home address could commit address fraud. This means they change your mail delivery address — and you could be none the wiser.

This way, all of your mail goes to their address. Just think about all the highly sensitive information in your mail. From bank statements to medical bills, there’s a ton of private data someone could collect.

Oh, and this is especially scary if new payment cards come in the mail. A scammer could sign up for bank accounts in your name, racking up debt and leaving you with the bill. Tap or click here for three surefire signs someone stole your identity.

The best way to protect yourself — even with a leaked home address

When Kim first heard about home title theft, she didn’t think it could really happen. As it turns out, cybercriminals really can forge your name off of the title of your own home and take over as the new owner.

Home title theft is a nightmare, and you’re not covered by homeowner’s insurance or common identity theft programs! Our sponsor, Home Title Lock, puts a barrier around your home’s title. The instant they detect anyone tampering with your home’s title, they mobilize to shut it down.

Sign up at today to protect your home, and don’t forget to let them know Kim sent you!

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