Identity theft occurs when a criminal steals personal information, such as Social Security numbers, bank account or credit card numbers, or ID numbers to access the victim’s accounts or open new accounts, obtain credit, etc. with a false identity.
To prevent identity theft, we recommend safeguarding all personal information and securely destroying all sensitive documents when you no longer need them. We provide secure shred bins in all of our offices for your use. We also recommend monitoring your accounts for any suspicious activity. The following can be signs that your identity has been stolen:
Receiving unexpected billing statements or having your mail rerouted or stopped.
Receiving multiple phone calls for another person.
Notices that your address or password has been changed.
A sudden unexplained change in your credit score or new accounts on your credit report.
Unusual transactions on your bank accounts.
Being told by a service provider that they cannot verify or locate your account or that your Social Security number is already in their system.
In addition to monitoring your bank accounts, you should also verify your credit report each year. To receive a free copy, visit AnnualCreditReport.com.
More information on protecting yourself from identity theft and what to do if you suspect you’ve been a victim can be found on the FTC’s Consumer Information website.
As always, if you have questions about protecting your accounts, don’t hesitate to call us at 800.991.2221 or stop by to speak with our member service representatives.