Identity Theft is a major concern that is not going away any time soon. It is important to stay informed and protect your information.
Here are some common tips:
- Do not provide personal information on the phone, through mail or online unless you initiate the contact.
- Secure personal information in your home to avoid theft (e.g. a locked, fireproof container).
- Be cautious when responding to promotions. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- Ask about information security procedures at places that collect your personal information (work, doctor, etc.).
- Secure your computer and electronic devices.
IdentityTheft.gov is the federal government’s one-stop resource for identity theft victims. The site provides streamlined checklists and sample letters to guide you through the recovery process.
Be aware that many fraudsters use similar scams to try to obtain your personal information. It’s important to be aware of current scams.
Mobile Deposit Scams:
Mobile Deposit or Remote Deposit Capture is designed to allow you to make deposits to your accounts from a remote location by taking a picture of your check. While mobile deposit is convenient, it does present an opportunity for scammers. There are several ways scammers are employing mobile deposit scams, but the most common way is to steal the account holders’ personal or account information or tricking them into providing it with social engineering. Thieves trick their victims by promising them anything from love to loans to free money in exchange for their information. The scammer may ask for your online banking information or your account and personal information. You may think that you would know not to give out your personal information, but the scam usually has a seemingly legitimate reason to need this information.
Thieves will commonly use scams such as the Romance Scam, Job Scam, Loan Scam or Easy Money Scam to lead into Mobile Deposit Scams. Just remember the old adage, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Never give out personal or banking information to people you meet online!
Stay a step ahead with the latest info and practical tips from the nation’s consumer protection agency. Browse FTC scam alerts
FTC SCAM ALERTS (new window/tab)
There are three consumer reporting agencies in the United States in which you can get your free credit report from annually under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. It is important to obtain a copy of each report annually to ensure that all account information is accurate.
The only website authorized to give this free report yearly is www.annualcreditreport.com. Be sure to check your spelling to ensure you are on the correct site because there are “imposter” websites offering free credit reports.
When you visit this site, you can choose to either get all three reports at the same time, or you can instead decide to space it out and request an annual free report one reporting agency at a time and visit the site every four months. If you chose to space it out, make sure to keep note of which agency you obtained a report from as you will not get another free report from this agency for another 12 months.
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