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A Quick Guide To Personal Information Management

By Andy Zhang

The news media tends to get a bit alarmist at the thought, and it does have a way of making you nervous to be sure. We are discussing identity theft here, but the good news is that you do not have to let the bad news scare you one bit. The fact is that it is fairly simple to create a personal information management system all on your own.

Begin by understanding exactly what personal information is. Obviously your name, address, and telephone number fall in to this category, but are there other ways of tapping into your information? Yes, there are, such as receipts from shopping and old bills thrown in the trash can. These can be gleaned for tidbits just as easily as if you dropped your identification card on the floor.

The real biggie as far as hiding things goes is the almighty SSN. Everybody has one, or needs one, and these digits can be the portals to everything there is to know about you. So keep it at home, always. Put it in a safe if you have one. Lock it in a drawer, okay? The thing to know is that you so rarely need to show the thing, that you simply never need to carry it. Whip it out when you get a new job, but that is it. Memorize the number just in case, and you are covered.

Your license to drive a car is another thing. If you do not drive you do not need one at all. But other than that, you will only need it if you are driving. And even then, the only people you will ever need to show it to are policemen, if you happen to get pulled over. Honestly, how often is that? As for general identification purposes you can go with a different sort of picture ID, like the ones you can by real cheap at check cashing joints. As for check cashing itself, give it up and get a card to do it with.

Your credit cards pose a problem, but it is not as great as the others. It does not show your home address or anything personal, and you must use a personal identification number to use it at all. The secret to using these numbers is to keep them memorized and not written down. And use different numbers for all of your different cards. Yes it is a pain, but it is a very safe measure to take.

Now, a word about online transactions. If they make you uncomfortable then simply do not do it at all. It is not necessary to do everything online, even though it is usually very safe and convenient. But when doing so, the same rules apply. Do not post your address, or phone number, or anything else that can lead directly to you yourself.

The bottom line with personal information management is straightforward. Do not give up any information about who you are, where you live, how you can be reached, and anything whatsoever to do with your money to anybody unless it is absolutely essential to do so. Use the precautions that came with every financial system you have, as they are offered for good reason, your protection.

Want to find out more about personal information management, then visit Andy Zhang’s site on how to choose the best PIM software for your needs.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Zhang, Andy "A Quick Guide To Personal Information Management." A Quick Guide To Personal Information Management. 5 Jul. 2010. 3 Nov 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Zhang, A (2010, July 5). A Quick Guide To Personal Information Management. Retrieved November 3, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Zhang, Andy "A Quick Guide To Personal Information Management"

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