Prevention & Resolution
Simple Steps to Safeguard Your Identity
First Capital Bank of Kentucky takes your identity security very seriously. Online fraud is always evolving, and your best defense against it is knowledge and awareness.
Simple Steps to Safeguard Your Identity
Up to 500,000 individuals are victims each year of identity theft, a fast-growing form of fraud. Fortunately, a few simple steps can help ensure you stay out of these statistics.
“Identity theft” or “account takeover fraud” involves criminals stealing a person’s personal information. The crooks assume a person’s identity, apply for credit in his or her name, run up huge bills, stiff creditors and generally wreck the victim’s credit record.
At First Capital Bank of Kentucky, we put a combination of safeguards in place to protect customers, including employee training, rigorous security standards, data encryption and fraud detection. You can take these steps to avoid becoming a victim:
- Don't give your Social Security or account numbers to anyone over the phone, unless you initiated the call.
- Destroy receipts, old bank statements and unused credit card offers before discarding them. Crooks could steal information from your trash and use it to get credit in your name.
- Review your bank and credit card statements as soon as you receive them to check for unauthorized transactions.
- Protect your PINs and computer passwords; use a combination of letters and numbers, and change them often. Never carry this information with you!
- Order copies of your credit reports once a year to ensure accuracy. Contact any of the national credit bureaus to acquire these reports:
- TransUnion - 800-680-7289
- Experian - 800-397-3742
- Equifax - 800-525-6285
- Report any suspected fraud to your bank or credit card issuers immediately so they can start to close accounts and clear your name right away. You may also contact the Federal Trade Commission's ID Theft Consumer Response Center toll-free at 877-IDTHEFT.
By law you are only liable for the first $50 of unauthorized charges against a credit card account. Still, restoring your identity can be a tremendous inconvenience. It’s worth your while to exercise a little preventive maintenance. Protect yourself against this terrible crime.
For more personal finance tips, visit the American Bankers Association’s Consumer Connection at www.aba.com.
Simple Steps to Prevent Identity Theft
- Manage Your Mailbox
- Don't leave bill payment envelopes clipped to your mailbox or inside with the flag up; criminals may steal your mail and change your address.
- Know your billing cycles, and watch for missing mail. Follow up with creditors if bills or new cards do not arrive on time. An identity thief may have filed a change of address request in your name with the creditor or post office.
- Carefully review your monthly accounts, credit card statements and utility bills (including cellular phone bills) for unauthorized charges as soon as you receive them. If you suspect unauthorized use, contact the provider's customer service and fraud departments immediately.
- When you order new checks, ask when you can expect delivery. If your mailbox is not secure, then ask to pick up the checks instead of having them delivered to your home.
- Although some consumers appreciate the convenience and customer service of general direct mail, some prefer not to receive offers of pre-approved financing or credit. To opt out of receiving such offers, call 888-5OPTOUT (sponsored by the three national credit bureaus).
- The Direct Marketing Association offers services to help reduce the number of mail and phone solicitations. To join their mail preference service, mail your name, address and signature to:
- Mail Preference Service
Direct Marketing Association
P.O. Box 9008
Farmingdale, NY 11735-9008
- Check Your Purse or Wallet
- Never leave your purse or wallet unattended — even for a minute.
- Protect PINs and passwords (don't carry them in your wallet!); use a 10-digit combination of letters and numbers for passwords, and change them periodically.
- Carry only personal identification and credit cards you actually use in your purse or wallet. If your ID or credit cards are lost or stolen, notify creditors immediately and ask the credit bureaus to place a fraud alert in your file.
- Keep a list of all your credit cards and bank accounts, along with their account numbers, expiration dates and credit limits, as well as the phone numbers of customer service and fraud departments. Store this list in a safe place.
- If your state uses your Social Security number as your driver's licence number, ask to substitute another number.
Prevention & Resolution
- Keep Your Personal Numbers Safe & Secure
- When creating passwords and PINs (personal identification numbers) do not use any part of your Social Security number, birth date, middle name, wife’s name, child’s name, pet’s name, mother’s maiden name, address, consecutive numbers, or anything that a thief could easily deduce or discover.
- Ask businesses to substitute a secret alphanumeric code as a password instead of your mother's maiden name.
- Shield the keypad when using ATMs or when placing calling card calls.
- Memorize your passwords and PINs; never keep them in your wallet, purse, Rolodex or electronic organizer.
- Get your Social Security number out of circulation and release it only when necessary — for example, on tax forms and employment records, or for banking, stock or property transactions.
- Do not have your Social Security number printed on your checks, and do not allow merchants to write it on your checks. If a business requests your Social Security number, ask to use an alternate number.
- Never give your Social Security number, account numbers or personal credit information to anyone who calls you.
- Bank, Shop & Spend Wisely
- Store personal information in a safe place and destroy documents you don't need. Destroy receipts, copies of credit applications, insurance forms, bank checks and statements, expired charge cards and credit card offers you get in the mail, before you put them out in the trash.
- Cancel your unused credit cards so that their account numbers will not appear on your credit reports.
- When completing loan or credit applications, be sure that the business either shreds them or stores them securely.
- When possible, watch your credit card as merchants complete transactions.
- Use credit cards that have your photo and signature on the front.
- Sign your credit cards immediately upon receipt.
- Carefully consider what information you want placed in the residence telephone book and ask yourself what it reveals about you.
- Keep track of credit card, debit card and ATM receipts. Never throw them in a public trash container. Destroy them at home after you no longer need them.
- Prevention & Resolution
- Ask businesses what their privacy policies are and how they will use your information. Can you choose to keep it confidential? Do they restrict access to data? Consider their answers when determining whether to engage their services.
- Choose to conduct business with companies you know to be reputable, especially online.
- When doing business online, use a secure browser that encrypts purchase information, and make sure your browser's padlock or key icon is active.
- Don't open email from unknown sources. Use virus detection software.
- Review Your Information
- Order copies of your credit reports from the three national credit bureaus every year, and ensure all information is correct, especially your name, address and Social Security number. Look for indications of fraud, such as unauthorized applications, unfamiliar credit accounts, credit inquiries, and defaults or delinquencies that you did not cause.
- Check your Social Security Earnings & Benefits statement once each year to ensure that no one else is using your Social Security number for employment.