Scams and Identity Theft attempts continue to evolve – be cautious!

Attempts by scam artists to steal money or financial information from consumers continue to grow and evolve. See the checklist below for things to be on the lookout for and steps to take if you notice a scam attempt.

—– Scam Prevention Checklist —–

– Don’t respond to any email communications requesting money, private information, or asking you to make a purchase on behalf of anyone else.
– If a person or company offers you financial opportunities or product, do you own research on their legitimacy – i.e. do an online search of their name and number, read reviews.
– If you receive an email unexpectedly and it asks you to open a link or attachment, do not click or open the link/attachment. Delete the email. If you recognize the senders name, contact them to make sure their request was legit.
– Be cautious of telephone calls where personal information is requested. If you receive a call like this, hangup and call your financial institution.
– Do not send cash, gift cards, or wire money to any person or entity you do not know. It is nearly impossible to track and/or retrieve these funds.
– Review your online banking or account statements frequently for suspicious activity. If you notice anything, contact your financial institution or card processor immediately.
– When making payments online, use only traceable payments. For example: credit cards, debit cards, or a trusted online payment tool.
– Don’t agree to deposit a check and/or wire money on anyone’s behalf. Anyone who overpays with a check and requests that a portion of the funds to be returned is almost certainly attempting fraud. If these checks turn out to be bogus, you will likely be held responsible for paying it back.
– Sign up for account notifications through your financial institution – overdraft notifications, credit and debit card alerts, etc.
– Sign up for an Identity Theft Protection

If you feel that you have been a victim of a scam or identity theft attempt, please contact your financial institution immediately.

You also may want to consider reporting scams or identity theft attempts to one of the following agencies:

Identity theft, fraud, or scams of any kind: www.ftc.gov/complaint
International scams: www.econsumer.gov