As cybercrime techniques become more sophisticated, about 1 in 3 Americans can expect to have their identity or financial data compromised. If you plan to buy a Columbus area home in the future, protecting your credit is a must!

Here are 10 ways to protect your credit and your identity, courtesy of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and other sources:

1. Check your credit reports. You can order a free credit report from the major bureaus through These show your personal identifying info and your credit accounts and loans. If anything looks incorrect, contact the reporting bureau right away.

2. Use strong, complex passwords to protect your online activity. Never use the same password on all your accounts.

3. Update the password on your home internet router periodically.

4. Never answer phone calls or texts from numbers you do not recognize.

5. If you answer an unknown caller, do not confirm your identity with the caller. Instead, ask them, “Who is calling?” If you do not recognize the person and/or company, hang up! They could be trying to record your voice to impersonate you for account access.

6. Check your credit card and bank statements thoroughly. Thieves may test access to an account with small transactions. If you don’t recognize a transaction, investigate it, no matter the amount.

7. Avoid inserting your credit or debit card into a card reader whenever possible, especially at gas station pumps and self-checkouts. Use the touchless option and “wave” your card over the reader.

8. If you receive a text or call claiming to be from law enforcement, or any government agency or legal department, it is a scam. Use the “block” option on your phone to prevent additional attempts.

9. Never use a public wi-fi connection to check your bank account balance or to conduct online shopping.

10. Never respond to an email, text, or social media message asking you for money. Emails and texts can be spoofed, and social media accounts can be impersonated and hacked.

This is not a comprehensive list, but you get the idea! Thieves often capitalize on complacency. Paying attention to your communication and to your account activity is worth the effort.

As Exclusive Buyer’s Brokers, we serve your best interests at all times! Unlike real estate agents and brokerages who represent sellers, as an Exclusive Buyer’s Broker, we only represent you, the buyer, getting you the best price and terms with no conflict of interest at all times.

Understanding this distinction could literally save you thousands of dollars not only on the purchase price and terms, but also on seller concessions and home inspection issues, whether you are a first-time homebuyer or an experienced homeowner!

Contact us with your home buying questions! Remember, we are with you every step of the way…all the way home!

Andrew Show
Exclusive Buyer’s Broker, CEBA-M, MCNE, CSP, PSA,e-PRO, CREM, ABRM, AHWD
Buyer’s Resource Realty Services
Serving Metro Columbus, Ohio with Exclusive Buyer’s Agents
7100 North High Street, Suite 204, Worthington, Ohio 43085
614-888-4110 | 888-888-4110 Toll Free | 614-839-4110 Fax