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Identity Theft is the most popular and profitable form of consumer fraud. It occurs when someone uses your personal information such as your name, Social Security number, credit card number or other identifying information, without your permission to commit fraud or other crimes. While First Southern Bank works to protect your banking privacy, you also play an important role in protecting your information.
Here are a few steps you can take to protect your identity:
- Add your phone numbers to the national Do Not Call Registry at https://www.donotcall.gov/ or by calling 1-888-382-1222. Since February 2008, these registered telephone numbers will no longer expire off the list.
- Never respond to OOBA authentication phone calls or texts that you did not initiate.
- Examine your credit card and financial institution statements immediately upon receipt to determine whether there were any unauthorized transactions. Report any that you find immediately to the financial institution.
- Never share your banking information or login credentials with someone by phone, text, or email (even if you are told it is someone from a trusted institution). This includes your Username, Password, Security Question Answers, and Out of Band Authentication Codes.
- Use longer, unique passwords or 12-16 digit password phrases.
- If you are offered a “too good to be true” deal, they are usually always a scam.
- Remember, fraudsters will play on your emotions and goodness of heart to acquire your personal and financial information.
- Place a fraud alert every 90 days on your credit file at https://www.experian.com/fraud/center.html. By placing a fraud alert with Experian, you will automatically have alerts placed at Equifax and TransUnion.
- Each year, you are entitled to one free credit report through https://www.annualcreditreport.com/index.action or by calling 1-877-322-8228.
- Request a copy of your Social Security statements at ssa.gov/myaccount to be sure that no one else is using your social security number for employment.
- Opt out of pre-screened credit offers by calling 1-888-567-8688 or at https://www.optoutprescreen.com/.
- Monitor your accounts by keeping track of transactions on your accounts and logging in to First Southern Bank’s Online Banking, where you can view your activity as it is posted.
- Contact your financial institution immediately and change all passwords and security questions if you ever feel your digital credentials or financial information has been compromised.
- Do not carry your Social Security card in your wallet.
- Do not have personal information such as your Social Security number and driver’s license number printed on your checks.
- Keep your new and cancelled checks in a safe place.
- Do not leave your purse, wallet, checkbook, or any other forms of identification in your car or any place susceptible to theft.
- Shred or tear up any documents containing banking or credit information, especially pre-approved credit offers, before you throw them away. To opt out of pre-approved credit card offers, call 1-888-567-8688.
- Keep your PIN’s and passwords a secret. Do not write them down or share them with anyone.
- Use your debit/credit card chip instead of swiping whenever possible. This helps protect your card through creating a unique transaction code each time you use it, as opposed to swiping where the data never changes from transaction to transaction.
More information about the different types of fraud, malware and cybersecurity trends is located on our Security page and provides more tips on how to protect yourself online.
Contact us immediately at 1-800-625-7131 or (256)718-4200 if you notice any suspicious or unusual activity related to any of your First Southern Bank accounts.
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