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ID Theft Protection Tips

When it comes to money, you always want to learn more, save better and spend wisely…in other words, make a “new you.” But that doesn’t mean you want a literal “new you” running around out there!

Identity theft happens when a criminal steals your personal information and uses it for their own gain. That might mean someone uses your social security number to apply for a loan in your name. Or it could simply mean a stolen credit card or debit card number.

Whether a big or small situation, dealing with ID theft is stressful and financially harmful.

To keep any Southwest Financial member from going through hardship, here are some tips on protecting your personal information:

  • Don’t share your social security number with callers, email senders or friends. You should also keep your social security card in a safe place in case your wallet is stolen.
  • Keep your credit and debit card with you as much as possible and hide its number from view when you can. Someone looking over your shoulder could steal the number.
  • Guard your mail. Mail theft may lead to stolen personal information. You should also shred mail after you’re done with it so a criminal can’t find your information by going through the garbage.
  • Create strong passwords and use two-factor authentication on your accounts. These security measures make it more difficult for a hacker to steal information online.
  • Check your credit reports at least once every three months to notice unusual changes. Strange drops in your score or inquiries you don’t know about are signs of ID theft. Freeze your credit immediately to prevent any further damage.

If you think your card numbers have been stolen, call us immediately at 214.630.7111! You can also report identity theft to the Federal Trade Commission or contact the credit bureaus to freeze your credit.

Access a free copy of your credit report here: https://www.annualcreditreport.com/

Want to learn more? Text us at 214.613.0834

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