Bank of The Valley offers tips to avoid becoming a victim of Identity Theft.
- Don't give your Social Security number or other personal credit information about yourself to anyone who calls you. Criminals use this information to open new charge accounts posing as you.
- Tear up receipts, bank statements and unused credit card offers before throwing them away. Criminals can collect bits of information about your by going through your trash.
- Watch for missing mail and don't mail bills from your own mailbox with the flag up. An identity thief may steal your mail and file a change of address form with your credit card company or the U.S. Postal Service.
- Review your monthly accounts regularly for any unauthorized charges.
- Order copies of your credit report once a year to ensure accuracy.
- When conducting business online, make sure your browser's padlock or key icon is active.
- Don't open e-mail from unknown sources and use virus detection software.
- Protect your PINs and passwords and change them frequently.
- Report any suspected fraud to your bank, credit card companies and the fraud units of the three credit reporting agencies immediately. The fraud unit numbers are: Trans Union (800)680-7289, Experian (888)397-3742, and Equifax (800)525-6285. You may also contact the FTC's ID Theft Consumer Response Center toll-free at (877)IDTHEFT.
Here is the contact information for each bureau's fraud division:
P.O. Box 740250
Atlanta, GA 30374
P.O. Box 1017
Allen, TX 75013
P.O. Box 6790
Fullerton, CA 92634
If Your Credit or Debit or ATM Card Information is Stolen
- Report the theft of this information to the card issuer as quickly as possible.
- Cancel your account and open a new one. Review your billing statements carefully after the loss.