Identity Theft is a serious crime. It can occur at anytime and to anyone. It happens when someone takes your personal information without your knowledge and uses it to commit fraud or other crimes.
Follow these simple guidelines to help protect your identity:
- Shred any documents with sensitive information.
- Don't carry your Social Security Card with you and don't give your number out unless it is absolutely necessary.
- Only give out personal information over the phone when you have initiated the call.
- Keep your computer's security (firewalls, anti-spyware, and anti-virus software) up-to-date.
- Choose passwords that are easy for you to remember, but hard for others to figure out. A strong password contains more than eight characters, a capital letter, and at least one numeric or non-alphabetical character.
- Keep any sensitive information in a safe place like a home safe or safe deposit box at the bank.
- Check your credit report at least annually to make sure everything is correct and up-to-date. In reviewing this report it may help you catch signs of identity theft such as unfamiliar accounts or charges, suspicious activity, or incorrect identifying information. The ONLY government-sanctioned website to check your report for free once a year is www.annualcreditreport.com.
- Watch your bank account and monthly statements closely for any unauthorized activity.
Debit Card Protection - Falcon Fraud Manager
Falcon is a system that monitors debit card and ATM transactions for potential fraud based on your personal spending habits/trends. If a transaction is deemed suspicious, you will receive a call from a Falcon Fraud Specialist to verify the transaction. The call will come from a live person, never a recording and they will never ask you for personal information. If you did not initiate the transaction, your debit card will be blocked before additional fraudulent transactions can take place. If you do not answer the call, a temporary block may be placed on your debit card if the fraud potential is high. Please call us today to be sure we have your most up-to-date contact information.
If you plan to travel away from your home area, please contact us with the dates and locations. This will help recognize which transactions may be legitimate versus fraudulent.
Debit Card Protection - Shazam Bolt$
Shazam Bolt$ allows you to receive transaction alerts right to your phone via text message alerts, email alerts, or both. You set the alerts you want and how you want to receive the alerts to ensure you know how and when your card is being used. SHAZAM BOLT$ also allows you to place a temporary card block on your Boone Bank & Trust Co. debit card. So if you misplace your debit card, place a card block. As soon as you find your debit card, remove the card block. It's as easy as that. Click here to learn more.
Enhanced Login Security
Boone Bank & Trust Co. has enhanced login security for Online Banking. We have added levels of security above and beyond the firewalls, encryption and password protection. With Enhanced Login Security, a verification code is established. This means that not only is your information protected with a password, your computer is recognized as well.
Be aware of fraudulent websites and make sure that you are only giving your card information to reputable websites. Also, be aware of the top 5 online scams:
- Fraudsters will send you an email from what seems like a legitimate business
- Fraudsters will ask for personal information and then use it to steal from you
- Sometimes they say you need to pay more taxes
- Sometimes they pretend to be a kidnapper, saying you need to send money to keep everyone safe
- They may even promise you a high-limit, preapproved credit card if you pay processing fees
Use caution when you receive these types of emails. If an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is.
When Identity Theft Happens
Unfortunately Identity Theft can strike any of us. If you have been a victim, here are some steps you can take to minimize the impact.
Contact your financial institution(s) about the situation and close any accounts that have been affected or that have been opened fraudulently.
Contact one of the major credit bureaus to place a free 90-day fraud alert and to review your credit reports for any signs of identity theft. The credit bureau that you have contacted must tell the other two.
File a report with your local police department.
Report the theft to the Federal Trade Commission at www.identitytheft.gov.
Fraud can happen when you least expect it. Stay alert and be attentive.