We share personal and financial information about ourselves every day that can make us vulnerable to identity theft. Take steps to avoid becoming a victim.
Many common, every day transactions can put us at risk for identity theft and fraud, often without our realizing it. For example, when you shop online, rent a car, or book a hotel room, you are required to share your name, address, and phone number, along with a credit card number.
By gaining access to your personal information, a criminal can use your identity to open a bank account with a line of credit, rent an apartment, buy a car, or get a loan. He or she may even commit a crime and give your name to the police.
The good news is there are steps you can take to protect yourself from being victimized. Here are eight ways to guard against fraud and identity theft:
Read Prevent ID theft: Avoid financial scams, then log on to the Call to Health* website and complete the How to Avoid Being Taken by a Phone Scam challenge to earn 20 Call to Health points. Don’t be embarrassed. If you’ve been scammed or your personal information is stolen, file a report with your local police department right away. Certain types of scams and fraud may also be reported to the appropriate federal enforcement agencies. You may also contact your state consumer protection office.
If you have medical coverage* through the Board of Pensions, you can consult with a fraud resolution specialist using the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), at no cost to you. The specialist can guide you in reporting the crime and help you with a recovery plan. To access the EAP, call 866-640-2772, or log into the EAP website.
*The EAP and Call to Health are not available to members enrolled in Triple-S, GeoBlue, or the Medicare Supplement Plan.