Make sure you're purse-onally protected

The holiday shopping season is upon us and many of you will be out busting through doors trying to get those good deals. But you can't get a good deal if your wallet is stolen. So, what shouldn't you have in your purse, or men, some of these you shouldn't have in your wallet either.

As you're reading this, go grab your purse, and check to see if you have any of these items in your purse or wallet.

The first thing you shouldn't have is your password cheat sheet. This includes keeping your PIN in the same wallet as your debit card.

You could keep your on your phone but if you do, make sure you put a password lock on your phone.

Also, you shouldn't have your passport, social security card, or birth certificate. If people get ahold of these, you can be in big trouble.

Financial expert Gretchen McGee says, "

They can open up accounts, they can get a loan, they can do all kinds of things, they can go get a driver's license if they have your birth certificate along with your social security card. They can go get a driver's license with your name. So, you should not keep your social security card in your purse at all.


A good place to keep those is in a safe. You can buy a safe to fit those three things for less than $20.

McGee says, "This time of year, it's Christmas, good time to think about giving a gift, a home safe to someone. Maybe you have parents that you can't think of what to buy them for Christmas. A home safe would be a good idea. Maybe you're a parent, trying to think of what to get your grown children. A safe for at home is something that they'll definitely use."

Some other things you shouldn't keep in there, spare keys. A lost wallet with your driver's license plus a spare key is an equation for bad things to happen.

Blank checks are an obvious risk. Thieves can easily take out money from your account, especially if the checks are signed.

Alright, so you shouldn't have these things in your purse. Where should they be then?

You should carry your driver's license or another personal ID while traveling in the United States. If you're traveling out of the country, you should photocopy your passport and leave the real one in a hotel safe.

Also, if you have multiple credit cards, write down a list of all of the cancelation numbers and keep that at home. If they're on the back of your credit card, that won't do you any good if your wallet is stolen.

Quincy Police Officer Peter Hummel says, "If you're a victim of identity theft or if your purse is stolen, your credit cards, debit cards, things like that, make a list of the items that were taken, that way when you contact the police department, you already have that ready to go."

Banking technology changes every day. It started with ATM cards and will continue to evolve to accommodate conveniences for people. Banks have apps that allow you to do just about anything -- even transfer funds. You can even load gift cards on to your phone and use that to pay.

McGee says, "The cashless society you're probably more protected because if you lost your debit card or your cash card, you call the number that's on the card and you cancel your card immediately and it will be replaced. If you lost your purse or your wallet and it was filled with cash, you're going to be lost the cash that was in it. "

Black Friday is now two weeks away... Maybe you can even get a great deal on a new bag... But what should you grab while you're heading out the door? You want to look for three things.

The first is a cross body strap. This is good for many reasons. It allows you to have both hands free for shopping, and it's harder for someone to steal your bag. Also, make sure your purse has a zipper so you can close your bag. And last, if your purse has a flap, that's an added bonus.

Fashion expert Chris Taylor says, "When you're wearing that bag, especially during the holidays and it gets crazy, put that flap opening toward your body. And that's going to be kind of a third level of protection that's going to be provided."

There also are bags made by a company in Chicago called Travelon that are "anti-theft" bags. There is a metal mesh that's in the bottom of the bag, and also in the handle. That prevents thieves from slashing the bag to try to get your belongings.