We don't often think about our wallets especially when they're running dry. For most of us, our wallets contain credit/debit cards, a driving licence, membership cards, receipts and if we're lucky, a bit of cash. Not much really to bother thinking about until we lose it! A lost wallet then becomes the bane of your life.
Firstly, if you have anything in your wallet displaying your address, you should really remove it. Why? Because it makes it easier for someone to use your identity illegally the more personal details they have. Debit and credit cards will usually only have your name on them so they're OK. Most membership cards are also OK as they usually only have a name and number printed on them. A driving licence will have your address on it and it's safer not to have this in your wallet. Contrary to popular belief, it's not necessary to have your driving license with you when you're driving. If police request to see it, you are usually given up to 7 days to produce it at a police station.
Don't keep much cash in your wallet. Cash makes it very easy for even the most honest of people to hold on to your lost wallet or dump it somewhere else in fear of getting prosecuted if they steal your money. If there is nothing in your lost wallet of any direct value, you're more likely to get it back.
There's no reason why you shouldn't be proud of a designer wallet. But the reality is that a designer wallet, or a wallet that looks like it's valuable, is more likely to be kept by someone that finds it. You're better off keeping your wallet simple so if you lose it, your lost wallet would have no real value to anyone else.
The first thing to do if you have a lost wallet is to retrace your steps to see if you dropped it somewhere or misplaced it. Look in the obvious places and then the not so obvious ones. I once accidentally dropped my wallet in the toilet. I had great fun fishing that one out. Ask your friends, colleagues or family if they've seen it. Failing all that, assume that it's a lost wallet.
For each credit/debit card that you had in your wallet, call the relevant company and tell them about your lost wallet. A lot of card companies and banks nowadays will temporarily suspend bank or credit cards rather than replacing them. It's far more economical to do this rather than permanently disable the cards as many lost wallets find their way back to their owners eventually. A lost wallet with credit/debit cards that are frozen will be no use to anyone, including a criminal.
By applying a tag to your wallet (before you lose it obviously), anyone who finds it can enter the code on the iFoundThis website which will notify the you, the owner. The great thing about the tag is that it doesn't disclose any personal information so the finder has no way of knowing your identify with the tag alone. You'll get a notification telling you that someone has found your lost wallet and you can begin the recovery process. If you don't already have an iFoundThis account, sign up for free.
If you have an iFoundThis account, keep your eye on your mobile phone and email for any messages. If someone has found your lost wallet, they may report it to iFoundThis so that you can get it back quickly. Make sure you choose the 'Relay Recovery Method' which ensures the person that has found your wallet won't know where you live when they return it.
And lastly, keep your wallet safe. Make sure your back pocket, purse or handbag are secure. Keep your eye on your wallet when you're out and about and check it's there regularly.
Written by Andrew Simeou
11th Jun 2019
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