Identity theft experts recover honeymooner’s stolen identity

If you’ve ever misplaced your wallet or purse, you know the undeniable feeling of panic that ensues. You search frantically for your valuable possession while hoping that someone isn’t using your credit cards. How will you get it back? How many funds have been withdrawn? How will you deal with replacing all your information? And then you find it and breathe a long sigh of relief while vowing to never let it leave your sight again. At least, we hope.

Too many times, though, the purse or wallet is in the hands of the wrong person.

On her honeymoon, of all places, Amber* had her purse stolen. She lost her credit cards and financial documents. Fortunately, she had the foresight to contact an identity resolution expert. The expert helped her recover the items while freezing all her accounts until her return home.

The thief only made one fraudulent purchase, and it was removed from Amber’s account. The best part is that her file will continue to be monitored by fraud experts to make sure her identity truly is secure.

Amber was lucky to have identity fraud restoration coverage as part of her insurance policy. We offer identity theft coverage – complete with resources to prevent identity theft from happening in the first place – to all our home and auto customers.

See what other value-added services our policyholders receive, or ask your insurance agent to do a little research into your policy. Perhaps you have an unexpected coverage that could come in handy.

* Name changed for privacy reasons.

Clean green for a safer home and environment

As you go through your spring cleaning routine, you use countless products to wipe, dust, and scrub surfaces throughout your home. But why not focus on greening your home at the same time? You can start with the cleaning tools in your hands.

There are approximately 65 synthetic chemical products in the average American home, and those chemicals affect our environment. Nearly 70 percent of North American streams contain broken-down chemicals from laundry detergents.

By gradually changing to green cleaning products, you can reduce your environmental footprint. Green cleaning products are just as effective as traditional cleaners, and they have a much safer impact on your home and our world. Plus, you can start gradually — find green replacements as you use up your current products. You can purchase environmentally friendly, non-toxic cleaners in stores, or you can create your own.

Here are six easy ways to start green cleaning at home:
  1. Make your glass and mirrors shine: Wash them with a
          combination of four tablespoons lemon juice and ½
          gallon water.
  2. Remove a stain from vinyl: Dip a cotton cloth in lemon
          juice and rub on the stained area.
  3. Create your own furniture polish: Mix two parts olive oil and one part lemon juice.
  4. Get rid of paint odors: Place open dishes filled with vinegar around the room to absorb the smell. As the vinegar
          evaporates, so will the odors, leaving your room smelling fresh and clean.
  5. Clean soot and smoke stains from your fireplace: Mix equal parts cream of tartar and water, rub on the surface,
          let the mixture dry, and wipe off.
  6. Wash your hardwood floors: Mix one-quarter cup distilled white vinegar with one gallon warm water to create
          your own floor cleaner.

View more green cleaning tips and recipes.

Hosting a hole-in-one event? Better have coverage

Just how rare is a hole in one? Not as rare as you’d think. On a par 3 hole, an average golfer has roughly a 12,500-to-1 shot at an ace. Not bad, when you consider other odds, such as:

  •  Being struck by lightning this year —
     a million-to-1 shot

  •  Risk of being killed in a shark attack —
     1 in about 3.7 million

  •  Winning the Powerball jackpot —
     1 in 175 million

  •  Hitting a hole in one and being killed on the
     next hole while retrieving a ball from a
     shark-infested water hazard — rare…very

     rare, trust us.

So the moral of this story is that even us mere mortals, with our awkward, not-quite-ready-for-the-PGA swings and probably more than 14 clubs in our bags (a rules violation, by the way) have a realistic chance of dropping it in the hole in one shot.

That should be reason enough to purchase special coverage for your hole-in-one contests. With the next couple months being a prime time for booster clubs, festivals, and other non-profit entities to host fundraising golf outings, all should be considering special event coverage for hole-in-one contests with major prizes.

SECURA offers coverage for hole-in-one contests, as well as many other special events that fill our summers, such as concerts, arts and crafts shows, sports events (excluding participant liability), parades, horse and tractor pulls, and more. Check with your agent to see if your event is covered.

Binge drinking comes with a host of risks, costs

As college students make their way to warm, beachfront destinations for the purpose of “blowing off some steam,” these spring break trips likely will involve binge drinking. Binge drinking is defined as consuming five or more drinks for men and four or more drinks for women in a single occasion.

Spring break may call attention to this problem, but it definitely is not just an on-campus issue. According to figures posted on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, 92 percent of adults who drink excessively (average of more than two drinks per day for men and more than one drink per day for women) admit to binge drinking in the last 30 days.

While binge drinkers are not always alcohol dependent and may not drink every day, this form of excessive alcohol consumption comes with plenty of risks, including injuries from drunk driving. Binge drinkers are 14 times more likely to drive while impaired than non-binge drinkers.

Other risks associated with binge drinking include alcohol poisoning, greater alcohol dependency, violence, sexually transmitted diseases, and unplanned pregnancy.

For information about reducing binge drinking, visit the resources listed below.