We all take precautions to protect our home and car, locking doors and windows to keep thieves away. But another kind of thief can be even more dangerous. Identity thieves steal other people’s information and use it to buy whatever they want. Even if the thief is caught, it can take years to sort out the theft. In the meantime, you may have difficulty obtaining credit.
HOW TO AVOID HAVING YOUR IDENTITY OR PERSONAL FINANCIAL INFORMATION STOLEN
- Be suspicious of any emails or phone calls with urgent requests for personal information.
- NEVER give out financial information such as checking and credit card numbers, or your Social Security number, unless you know the person or organization you’re talking to.
- Notify your credit union of suspicious phone inquiries such as those asking for account information “to verify a statement” or “award a prize”.
- Don’t use the links in an email that you don’t recognize to get to any web page and do not reply to the email.
- Always ensure that you are using a secure Website when submitting credit card information or other sensitive information via your Web browser.
- Report lost or stolen checks immediately. Always review new deliveries of checks to make sure none were stolen in transit.
- Closely guard your Personal Identification Numbers for your credit and debit cards and online banking access. Check your monthly statements to verify all transactions.
- Notify your credit union, bank, or credit card issuer immediately if you discover any erroneous or suspicious transactions on your statements.