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Understanding Identity Theft and How to Avoid It1/4/2019

Some of the most common forms include: driver’s license identity theft, mail identity theft, debit or credit card fraud, online shopping fraud, and social security number identity theft. During the holiday season, there is a spike in fraudulent criminal activity relating to stolen identities, as numbers of people are using credit cards, debit cards, and personal accounts to make purchases in stores and online. If consumers are not careful with this information, it can be hacked and stolen by a criminal.

Before learning how to prevent fraud and identity theft, it is first necessary to become aware of the most common ways that criminals steal personal information and identities. According to Matt Tatham of Experian, the ten most common ways your identity can be stolen are through data breaches, internet hacking, dark web marketplaces, malware activity, credit card theft, mail theft, phishing and spam attacks, WiFi hacking, mobile phone theft, and ATM skimmers. Thieves are typically very technologically savvy and are able to hack into your accounts and devices without you even becoming aware of the criminal activity until it is too late. Once these criminals have access to your personal accounts and information, there are several different ways that they use the information. First, thieves may open fraudulent credit card accounts in your name or use your accounts to make purchases. They may also sell your information online, giving even more criminals access to your personal identity and other members of your family. Finally, thieves could steal tax refunds, hack into accounts, and change important passwords and PIN numbers to lock you out of your own personal accounts. Thus, it is very important to be aware of the way you are protecting your privacy online.

While identity theft is common, there are steps you can take to prevent it from happening to you. If there is any suspicious account activity, you should alert your bank and other account holders of the fraudulent activity. File a report with credit card companies and other businesses in order to freeze the activity on your account and reverse any suspicious charges. By banking with Eagle Community Credit Union, you have the opportunity to sign up for our Ultimate Checking Account that comes with IDProtect. IDProtect is our identity theft monitoring and resolution service that protects you, your joint account holders, and eligible family members. This service provides aid that goes beyond filing a report of fraudulent activity. In fact, some of its benefits include additional services such as 3-in-1 credit file monitoring, 3-in-1 credit reports, total identity monitoring, fully managed recovery, identity theft expense reimbursement coverage, and IDProtect StealthTypeTM anti-keylogging tool. All of these services are included with the Ultimate Checking account as well as the same great benefits you are already used to, like dividends, co-op ATM and branch access, online/mobile banking, bill pay, and mobile deposit.

The Ultimate Checking account with IDProtect is our way to personally provide a system and service that monitors irregular account activity and protects your investments against fraud and identity theft. With this tool, we aim to drastically minimize the crime of identity theft against our customers and to provide peace of mind knowing that professionals and specialists will help handle the recovery process during a case of stolen identity. Taking steps that allow us to further protect your personal information has become critical to us.

During a time of year where online purchases, fraudulent scams, and criminal identity theft activity are frequent, it is significantly important to protect yourself and your family from the threats of identity theft. Along with monitoring your own activity and being aware of suspicious transactions online and in person, we suggest enrolling in Ultimate Checking with IDProtect to ensure the safety and recovery of your personal identity and information.

More information about our Ultimate Checking Account with IDProtect product and services can be found at: https://www.eaglecu.org/IDProtect



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