Identity Theft: What You Need to Know and Warning Signs

The dangers of identity theft and how to spot it

While terrifying, identity theft is nearly completely preventable when the right steps are taken.


With today’s technology and social media trends, a lot of your information is out there for anyone to see, which can be dangerous. But there are steps you can take to protect yourself and lower the financial impact of fraud. At Raccoon Valley Bank, we understand the seriousness of identity theft threats, and we want to keep you informed on what you can do, since identity theft is usually discovered by the consumer first. Read on to find out how to protect yourself and your hard-earned money.
 
Watch and monitor your accounts
Use Raccoon Valley’s online and mobile banking tools to monitor your accounts daily, or at least weekly.  Always review statements right when you get them.
 
Use eStatements and online banking
eStatements will come sooner than mail, so you can detect fraud sooner.  See how to sign up for eStatements here. Not only will you be protecting yourself, you are also helping the environment.
 
Follow up when you use Online Bill Pay
Online Bill Pay makes sending your monthly payments easy, but you still need to follow up with each vendor to ensure they received your payment. The system is secured using industry-standard encryption, but it never hurts to double-check.
 
Know the warning signs
If any of these things happen, you should contact your bank right away.

  • Denied credit. Check your credit report if you are denied credit or are offered unfavorable credit terms for strange reasons.
  • Unsolicited credit cards. Make sure you question any credit cards you receive that you didn’t apply for. Call the company right away to be safe.
  • Collection calls for things you didn’t buy. Be extremely careful of this because there are many different types of fraudulent calls happening.
  • Missing bills or statements. Alert Raccoon Valley Bank if something expected doesn’t show up in the mail or on your email account.
  • Unexpected charges.

 
These things might seem like obvious signs, but people often ignore them or don’t address them right away because they assume they are mistakes, not identity theft.
 
Check your credit report
You get one free look at your credit report every year from each of the three major credit reporting bureaus, Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. Keep up to date with your credit report and contact the credit bureaus to dispute something on the report or freeze your credit if you believe your identity has been stolen.
 
Raccoon Valley Bank wants you to understand possible threats to your money and how to spot them immediately. The sooner you can respond to identity theft, the less financial impact it will have and the less time spent dealing with it. At Raccoon Valley Bank, we take pride in keeping your accounts secure, but with today’s cyber-criminals, you can never be too cautious. Take these steps to stay on top of your accounts and protect yourself.

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