The next time you get the itch to photocopy your ass on the company printer, try this instead: photocopy the contents of your wallet. Now, you might ask why would you want to photocopy all of your sensitive information onto one sheet of paper so that an identity thief could easily steal your very soul? The reason is because if you ever lose your wallet, having a quick photographic inventory will be a life saver. Here are a few reasons why:
- You will have all of your account numbers and all of your credit card phone numbers in one place.
- You will have a copy of your driver’s license that you can use, unofficially, until you get yours replaced.
- You will have a record of all the items you will have to replace.
- If you had any “important” business cards (from other people), at least you’ll now have a record of their information.
- If you have a Constanza-type wallet, now is an excellent excuse to recycle those useless receipts or other slips of paper you’ve acquired. Seinfeld is in syndication, you don’t need to keep all those receipts to feel cool.
So, how should your wallet inventory be taken? Photocopy the front and back of every card (the front for the account numbers and the back for the service numbers) and keep those sheets in a safe place. Remember to date the photocopies so you know how stale that information is and be sure to update it every so often so you have a fresh copy to work with. And be absolutely sure to shred the old copies.