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Fraud Prevention Tips

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by Annie Carlin on May 30, 2013

  1. Sign your credit and debit cards with “See ID.”  This will force you to show your signature sample off your ID.  Few perpetrators of fraud will be able to replicate your signature on his or her ID.
  2. If you receive a voice mail from your credit card company that asks you to call back, only call back the number listed on the back of your card.  Do not respond directly to the contact number offered in the message.
  3. Websites with questionable content will sometimes ask for a credit or debit card number “for identification purposes only.”  Don’t get sucked in!  Unless you are actually making a purchase there is absolutely no need to supply them with your credit card information.
  4. Be suspicious of any emails from a bank or credit card company requesting your account information.  Contact the company directly to confirm the request.
  5. On a regular basis, check your Internet browser and social media site privacy settings to be sure that they match your needs.  After visiting secure websites, clear the cache of your browser so that no one can view any sensitive information.
  6. Do not click on ‘unsubscribe’ links in any unsolicited email, or reply with an unsubscribe message.  Doing either will simply confirm that the scammer is reaching a live address and they will continue to keep you on their contact lists.  Instead, simply delete the email.
  7. When shopping online there are two simple signs to guarantee you are on a secure page.  The first one is the “padlock” icon that is located at the top of your browser window and the other is “https” in the address bar.
  8. Become a password power user.  Avoid obvious passwords like birthdays, addresses or phone numbers- they are easy to guess and easy to access with a simple search.  Most sites recommend a minimum of eight characters that are a mixture of letters, symbols and numbers.
  9. Don’t use repeat passwords for anything!  Scammers will run compromised email accounts against financial institutions in case there is a repeat that will grant them access.
  10. Change your passwords frequently!  Many sites require periodic password changes and don’t permit password recycling.  Just as you change your smoke alarm batteries every New Year, make it a habit to change your passwords every full moon.

 



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