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Meredith Holt, Published September 26 2013

5 ways to rid your wallet of clutter

FARGO – According to U.S. Department of Justice statistics, 20 percent of identity theft victims said their problems began with a lost or stolen wallet.

If your wallet gets into the wrong hands, what do you stand to lose? Well, a lot, and more than just your money.

Here are five ways to help protect yourself by decluttering your wallet.

1. Leave your Social Security card at home. There’s no need to carry your Social Security card in your wallet. Memorize the number and leave it at home in a safe place.

2. Limit your credit cards. Unless you plan on racking up your limits on a crazed shopping spree, don’t keep every credit card in your name in your wallet. One or two will do.

3. Take out gift cards and gift certificates. Gift cards and gift certificates can be used like cash, so after that’s gone, they’ll be next. Grab them when you’re ready to redeem them.

4. Don’t carry a wad of cash. Keep a little cash in your wallet for emergencies, but leave the rest at home or in the bank. It’ll mean less risk and a slimmer billfold.

5. Find a separate place for receipts. Folded-up, wadded up and thrown in, receipts take up a lot of space. Put business-related and other important receipts in an envelope at home.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Meredith Holt at (701) 241-5590