Audit Your Wallet Before It Gets Lost

Audit Your Wallet Before It Gets Lost

Raise your hand if you know everything you’ve stuffed into your wallet (no peeking!). No? Then it’s time to do a wallet audit to make your life a lot less hellish if your wallet ever gets lost or stolen.

Photo by Ed Hunsinger

Donna Freedman writes on Get Rich Slowly after being mugged and coming to realise everything she had lost in her wallet. Take 10 minutes now to make a list of what’s in your wallet and the 1800 number for each credit card (don’t write down the card number). Obviously, keep that list outside of your wallet, perhaps stored in a Google Doc or previously noted web app designed for this job, Wallet Garden. When your wallet goes missing, you can cancel all your cards before thieves have a chance to use them. Also make a note of the recurring payments associated with each card, because you’ll have to redo them.

Freedman offers lots more tips on doing a wallet audit, including keeping only the cards you need in your wallet and masking the numbers on your health insurance card (make a photocopy and Sharpie-out the last four digits).

In the unfortunate event your wallet does get lost, here’s everything you need to do.

How to Do a Wallet Audit [Get Rich Slowly]


  • Even better – get rid of your wallet. Carry a money clip for your notes, and a separate card case for your credit/debit/drivers licence.

    If it’s not important enough to go in the card carrier, ditch it. This also forces you to actually DEAL with receipts / business cards / loyalty cards instead of letting them fester in your wallet, doing nothing but taking up space. For example, if that business contact is important enough, put their details in your phone instead of carrying their card everywhere. That way it’s also backed up.

    This will have the added benefit of not sitting on a gigantic fat wallet that’s ruining your back, and also makes you look more professional than someone carrying a fully stuffed messy filing cabinet in their back pocket. Looks cooler when you pull your card carrier out of your inside jacket pocket too.

  • Empty your wallet cards face down onto the scanner plate of your photocopier/printer/scanner and scan it in as a pdf or graphic image. Then hide it on your computer somewhere safe. Takes 2 minutes, and saves all that writing.

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