Learn How To Protect Yourself From Identity Theft
At BMI Federal Credit Union, we take your security seriously. Identity theft is a continuing problem, and while it can happen to anyone, there are steps you can take to safeguard you and your personal information.
Identity theft occurs when your name, address, Social Security number or other personal information is used fraudulently. It impacts your financial health, and can follow you for years.
How to Protect Yourself from Identity Theft
Avoid Carrying Too Much Information With You: Avoid carrying all of your identifying information in your wallet or purse. It's best to carry just your driver's license or state ID and keep items such as your Social Security card, passport and birth certificate in a secure location.
Shred, Don't Toss, Your Trash: One of the most common ways that thieves gain access to consumer information is to do so by digging through your trash. It can happen after it leaves your property, too. To avoid this problem, shred all documentation containing any of your loan information, personally identifying information or other sensitive materials.
Monitor Who You Share Information With: Unfortunately, people posing as government agents or even representatives from companies you work with might call to gather information from you. Don't provide this information unless you've called the company yourself from a phone number you've used previously.
Monitor Your Credit Report: Your credit score is your golden tool. Use it as a way to monitor what's happening with your accounts, including new accounts showing up that you didn't create. Check your credit report from each of the three agencies (Transunion, Equifax and Experian) at least once per year and report any information that isn't accurate directly to the agency.
Extra Tip for 2020: Do not abbreviate the year "2020" as “20” on legal/financial documents! Why? Fraudsters would be able to change the date you write. For example: "1/6/20" can be changed to "1/6/2018”, or “1/6/2021”. This includes checks, legal agreements, expiration dates, etc. Keep your information safe and write out "2020"!