Identity Theft

Protect your Identity

  • Don't forget your card. Remember to get your credit card back after purchasing goods or services.
  • Do not leave your credit card in hotel rooms or unnecessarily exposed for long periods of time. Its number can be copied even if the card is not taken.
  • Keep your receipts. Retain all carbon copies of credit card receipts and retain receipts from ATM withdrawals to check against your credit card billing statement.
  • Check billing statements carefully upon receipt to make sure all charges are yours. Errors or changes should be reported as soon as possible. If you don't get a billing statement on time, notify the credit card issuer immediately.
  • Do not put your credit card number on checks used to pay your monthly bills. The credit card company can always trace your check through your name / address information on the check.
  • Be careful when disposing of materials and correspondence relating to your finances. Shred all receipt carbon copies to make sure your credit card number is unrecognizable. Do not throw away canceled checks, financial / bank statements, or letters offering pre-approved credit cards where others can easily find them.
  • Promptly destroy all old cards or cards you no longer use. Dispose of them in a manner ensuring the card number is unrecognizable.
  • Secure your mailbox. Obtain a lock, if necessary. If you receive mail through an apartment house cluster-box arrangement, make sure the locks for the panel and your box lock correctly.
  • When applying for a credit card, check the return address. If there is a sticker with a return address placed on the application, contact the card issuing company to verify the correct address.
  • Do not give your credit card number or bank account information to anyone via the telephone.
  • Do not write your credit card number on a postcard notifying you that you have won a prize or gift and need the number as part of the award arrangements.
  • Do not leave gasoline credit card receipts at the pump. They may contain your credit card number.
  • Do not provide your credit card number to unsolicited email messages or on suspicious websites.
  • Protect your deposit slips and check book. Never give anyone a deposit slip or blank check as a way to give someone your address and phone number. Your deposit slip contains your account number and could allow someone to access your account.
  • Use direct deposit. Have social security checks, payroll checks, and other regularly recurring checks deposited directly into your bank account.
Check out what to do if you become a victim of identity theft.