Identity Theft

Hand holding a padlock

How To Guard Against Identity Theft

  • Remove mail promptly from your mailbox. Never use your mailbox for outgoing mail. Identity thieves raid mailboxes for credit card offers and statements.
  • Guard your social security number. Do not give out your PIN or credit card numbers over the phone unless you initiated the transaction.
  • Be very careful with receipts. Make sure you have them when you leave the store or ATM and do not throw them into public trash cans.
  • Destroy pre-approved credit card offers before you throw them out.
  • Account for all new checkbooks when you receive them in the mail.
  • Commit all passwords and PIN numbers to memory so no one can see them in writing.
  • Block your ATM transaction with your body to prevent someone from learning your PIN.

Review your credit report from time to time. The major credit bureaus are:

Help Keep Online Transactions Secure

  • Avoid sending sensitive information, such as account numbers, through UNSECURED e-mail.
  • Passwords or PIN numbers should be used when accessing an account online.
  • General security over your personal computer such as virus protection and physical access controls should be used and updated regularly.

What To Do If You Are A Victim

  • Close your accounts and create passwords for any new accounts.
  • Request both a "fraud alert" and that no new credit be granted without your approval from the three major credit bureaus.

Preventing Identity Theft (click here)