Unfortunately fraud and scams are a reality in today’s world. Learn how to protect yourself and your personal information.
- Never share account information. This includes your Internet banking login, account numbers, social security number and PINs. Do not provide personal information over the phone unless you initiate the contact and verify that it is a trusted source.
- Do not “over share” on social media. For example, avoid posting when you are on vacation and when you will be returning. Wait until you get back to post the fun photos!
- Secure your mail. Place outgoing mail in a post office collection box. Request your mail to be held by the post office if you will be gone for an extended period of time. eStatements are a great option!
- Safely dispose of sensitive information. Shred any papers that have personal or financial information.
Monitor your accounts
- Regularly review accounts statements.
- Set up eAlerts to be notified when transactions occur on your account.
- Request a copy of your credit report annually. There are three consumer-reporting agencies in the United States in which you can get your free credit report annually under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. The only website authorized to give this free report is annualcreditreport.com Alternatively, you may request a copy by calling 1.877.322.8228.
- Card Cracking: Scammers pressure you to give them your bank debit card and PIN or mobile banking login information. They use this to deposit fraudulent checks at the ATM or through mobile banking and then withdraw the funds. They claim they will give you a portion of the funds from the fake deposit (quick cash). They also say you will not be held responsible if you file a fraudulent claim with your financial institution. This is NOT true. By doing this you could be held liable and/or labeled as a “co-conspirator” and be required to pay back the money.
- Fake IRS calls: Generally more popular around tax time, however, scammers will call claiming to be the IRS and say you owe back taxes or are required to pay “federal student tax.” The IRS will never initiate contact by phone, email, text or social messaging demanding you to pay or asking to verify your information. If in doubt, hang up and contact the IRS directly – do not call the number you received the message/call from.
- For more information and to stay up to date with the latest fraud trends, we recommend visiting one of the following sites:
- Federal Bureau of Investigation at https://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety
- Federal Trade Commission at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/scam-alerts
If your data has been compromised, contact SPIRE right away.