Staying Alert: Avoiding Identity Thefts and Scams

April 27, 2020

As performing financial and other personal transactions online becomes more the norm than the exception, the potential for identity theft increases significantly. Identity theft usually involves someone using your personal information for his or her financial gain. A related scam involves exploiting your natural motivation to help a loved one in need by having you send money for that purpose when, instead, it is going to a scam artist. After reviewing common identity theft practices and financial scams, this article will identify specific actions that you can take to minimize your risk of falling victim to these crimes and what to do if you are victimized.

Methods Thieves Use to Steal Your Identity
Identity theft may include someone taking out a loan or opening a credit card in your name or even obtaining your tax refund from the IRS. To accomplish this, the wrongdoer may obtain your personal information surreptitiously by:
• pickpocketing your wallet
• going through your garbage
• collecting some mail (bills/ bank statements/tax forms) from your mailbox before you do.
• You may also unknowingly expose your information by simply using an ATM or filling your gas tank.

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