Defending Against Identity Theft
Tips to Protect Yourself from Identity Theft
Identity Theft occurs when someone uses your personal or business account information (non-public data that might include Social Security number, account number or other identifying information) without your permission to commit fraud, other financial crimes or theft of funds. Identify Theft is a serious crime and can have a serious impact on your good name, credit record, and can wreak havoc with your finances, credit history, and reputation – and it can take time, money, and patience to resolve.
- Protect your Social Security Number at all times. Don’t carry your Social Security card in your wallet.
- Keep your address and phone number(s) updated with the Bank to ensure you are receiving all Bank information.
- Personal information should not be shared on the phone, through the mail, or over the Internet unless you are confident of the recipient.
- Inspect your credit report. Order a copy of your credit report periodically from each of the three national credit bureaus from AnnualCreditReport.com and monitor the reports.
- Be aware and contact your Bank if you receive unexpected bills, credit cards or account statements.
What to Do If You Are a Victim of Identity Theft
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the nation’s consumer protection agency, has prepared a guide to help you reduce the risk of identity theft happening to you and to repair the damage that identity theft can cause. Review the FTC “Identity Theft – A Recovery Plan” guide by clicking on the link below. (Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view this document.)
If you believe that you are a victim of Identity Theft, take action immediately and…
1. Contact one of the nationwide credit reporting companies listed below and ask for a fraud alert on your personal or business credit report:
Equifax (800) 525-6285
Experian (888) 397-3742
TransUnion (800) 680-7289
2. Begin the reporting and recovery process by contacting the FTC by mail at:
Federal Trade Commission,
600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20580.