How to protect your identity from email, phone and online fraud

The FTC estimates that millions of individuals have their identities stolen each year, with personal information being used to get at your money and credit. E-mail, phone and fake web sites are used to secretly collect personal information and use it to rent an apartment, obtain a credit card, or establish a telephone account in another person’s name.

If you’re a victim of fraud or ID theft, you may not find out until you review your credit report or a credit card statement and notice charges you didn’t make—or until you’re contacted by a debt collector. You have two choices: protect and avoid before something happens, or try to recover after you’re victimized. Keep in mind these basics:

To protect and avoid: Remember…

  • Oregon State Credit Union will not ask you to provide personal financial information in exchange for money. If someone tries this on you, it’s not Oregon State Credit Union and you should not give any information.

  • If you initiate a transaction in person or by phone, Oregon State Credit Union may ask you to verify information in order to complete the requested transaction, but we don’t initiate activity seeking your information or money.

  • Oregon State Credit Union won’t ask you for personal information that is already securely maintained by us and then claim “… we have lost your record” or “… your accounts have been compromised.”

  • Don’t give out user IDs or passwords or other personal information in e-mail.

  • Don’t respond to threats to close your account if you don’t provide personal information.

To recover if you’re victimized

Go to the Federal Trade Commission’s identity theft website and be sure you:

  1. Place a fraud alert on your credit reports. Review your credit reports.

  2. Close the accounts that you know or believe have been tampered with or opened fraudulently.

  3. File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

  4. File a report with your local police or the police in the community where the identity theft took place.

Click here to watch the FTC video, Fighting back against ID theft

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