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Protect Yourself against Identity
theft is the result of someone stealing your personal information in
order to take over your credit accounts, open new ones or commit a
number of other crimes at your expense. Because identity theft
frequently involves no physical theft, identity theft often goes
unnoticed until significant damage has been done.
How to prevent identity theft:
mail and trash from theft.
Deposit outgoing mail in post office collection boxes or at your
local post office instead of an unsecured mailbox. Remove mail
from your mailbox promptly.
secure in a lockbox all documents with important identifying
on them, such as bank statements, credit card statements,
pre-approved credit card offers, charge receipts and pay stubs.
the credit card you would use in an emergency. Do not carry
your Social Security card.
provide personal financial information,
your Social Security Number, account numbers or passwords, over
the phone or the Internet if you did not initiate contact.
Do not send
sensitive personal or financial information
unless it is
encrypted on a secure Web site. Regular e-mails are not
encrypted. Look for the padlock symbol on the bottom bar of the
browser to ensure that the site is running in secure mode before
you enter sensitive information.
on the link provided in an e-mail
you believe is fraudulent. It may contain a virus that can
contaminate your computer.
Do not be
intimidated by an e-mail
or caller who suggests dire consequences if you do not
immediately provide or verify financial information.
believe the contact is legitimate,
go to the company’s Web site by typing in the site address
directly or using a page you have previously book marked,
instead of a link provided in the e-mail.
If you fall
victim to an attack, act immediately to protect yourself. Alert
all your financial institution(s). You may contact
Columbus Bank and Trust Company at (402) 564-1234 or at
(800) 343-2282. Remember to contact ALL your
financial institutions to place fraud alerts on your
credit files. Monitor your credit files and account statements
review your free credit report.
A new law (Fair & Accurate Credit Transactions Act or FACT Act)
requires credit reporting companies to provide you a free copy
of your credit report, at your request, once every 12 months.
It is important to check your credit report to ensure that the
information it contains is accurate and that no one has stolen
your identity. You can request your credit report at
www.annualcreditreport.com or by calling 1-877-322-8228.
Report suspicious e-mails or calls to the Federal Trade
Commission through the Internet at
www.consumer.gov/idtheft, or by calling 1-877-IDTHEFT.
If you believe the e-mail or phone call appears to be from
Columbus Bank & Trust Company, call us at (402) 564-1234
or (800) 343-2282 to report it.
Spyware is a
form of software that collects personal and confidential information
about a person without their proper knowledge or informed consent,
and reports it to a third party. Spyware is usually installed
without a user’s knowledge or permission. You can prevent and
detect spyware by:
and periodically updating anti-spyware, virus protection and
browser settings to prompt you whenever a Web site tries to
install a new program or Active-X control.
reading all End User Licensing Agreements (EULA) and avoiding
downloading software when licensing agreements are difficult to
patches to operating systems and browsers.
e-mail from untrustworthy sources.
Phishing is a
type of deception designed to steal your identity. In a phishing
scam, a malicious person tries to get information like credit card
numbers, passwords, account information, or other personal
information from you by convincing you to give it to them under
false pretenses. Phishing schemes usually come via spam e-mail or
pop-up windows. You can protect yourself and your information from
phishing by following these five easy steps:
respond to requests for personal information via e-mail. If in
doubt, call the company that claims to have sent you the e-mail.
sites by typing the URL (web site address) into your address
make sure the Web site is using encryption.
review your credit card and bank statements.
suspected abuses of your personal information to the proper