Protecting Yourself Against Identity Theft
Identity theft prevention
Identity theft is the possession or use of identifying information of another person, without that person’s consent, for financial gain or to further any unlawful purpose. Skilled thieves have a variety of ways to obtain your personal information including: stealing your mail (i.e. bank and credit card statements, tax information, new checks or credit card offers), phishing online or completing a change of address form to divert your mail.
To help prevent identity theft:
- Monitor your finances and credit reports regularly
- Shred documents that have any personal information
- Use strong passwords for your online accounts
- Don’t leave sensitive information unattended in a public place
- Don't email sensitive or confidential information
Even with all the proper precautions, identity theft can happen to anyone. Some of the warning signs of identity theft are:
- Unexplained or unauthorized withdrawals from your bank account
- Unexplained or unauthorized changes to the phone number, address, etc. for your bank account
- Bills for services you never received
- Declined checks
- Calls from debt collectors for debt that is not yours
- A tax return was filed in your name by someone else
Identity theft protection
In addition to monitoring your accounts yourself, it is important to be informed on the steps your financial institution takes to monitor your accounts as well. Check your financial institution’s website or contact a representative to find out what security and monitoring measures are used to protect your accounts.
Your financial institution may offer card control services to help you monitor your card activity, restrict purchase types and turn your card on or off.
Check to see if your debit and credit cards offer any additional financial protection resources as well. For example, Dollar Bank debit and credit cards come with free Mastercard® ID Theft Protection™, which includes 24/7 identity theft resolution services, credit identity monitoring, suspicious activity alerts and more.* For more information, visit mastercardus.idprotectiononline.com.
Additional resources to assist with protecting identity, reporting and recovering from identity theft are available on the Federal Trade Commission website at www.consumer.ftc.gov. You can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission by calling the Free Identity Theft Hotline at 1-877-IDTHEFT or using the online complaint form at identitytheft.gov.
*This benefit is provided by Generali Global Assistance Inc. Certain terms, conditions and exclusions apply. Please see your Guide to Benefits for details or call 1-800-MASTERCARD. Mastercard is a registered trademark, and Mastercard ID Theft Protection is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated.
This article is for general information purposes only and is not intended to provide legal, tax, accounting or financial advice. Any reliance on the information herein is solely and exclusively at your own risk and you are urged to do your own independent research. To the extent information herein references an outside resource or Internet site, Dollar Bank is not responsible for information, products or services obtained from outside sources and Dollar Bank will not be liable for any damages that may result from your access to outside resources. As always, please consult your own counsel, accountant, or other advisor regarding your specific situation.
Posted: September 10, 2020