Identity Theft is the fastest growing crime in the United Sates. It has hurt over 15 million Americans in the past year with the average loss of $3,500 per person. It is very important to safe guard your personal information, cards, and Pins. If you lose your cards or see suspicious activity on your account you need to contact us immediately. To help safeguard your cards and put more control in your hands we have CardNav. This app is free to download and use, click here to see more information about CardNav. If your personal information is compromised you should also alert all 3 major credit bureaus and discuss with them whether you need to place an alert on your file.
Below is contact information and helpful tips to avoid being a victim:
P.O. Box 740250
Atlanta, GA 30374
P.O. Box 1017
Allen, TX 75013
P.O. Box 6790
Fullerton, CA 92634
Never provide personal ﬁnancial information, including your Social Security number, account numbers or passwords, over the phone or the Internet if you did not initiate the contact.
Never click on the link provided in an e-mail if 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.
If you believe the contact is legitimate, go to the company’s Website 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 your ﬁnancial institution. Place fraud alerts on your credit ﬁles. Monitor your credit ﬁles and account statements closely.
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.
Criminals are working very hard not work. Using your money to finance their lifestyles. Please be careful and if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Below is a list of recent scams you need to watch out for. All scams and fraud need to be reported to the local police department and your financial institution. After you have been a victim of a scam you will need to monitor your accounts and credit reports. If you have fraudulent charges, you have about 48 hours to report them so you can recover any stolen money.
2018 IRS Fraud – Important, anytime you get a large deposit that is not yours, please call us first!
Tax Return Fraud
The IRS identified a new scam in which cybercriminals have stolen client data from tax professionals and filed fraudulent refunds using real taxpayer information, including bank account and routing information for direct deposit. The fraudster then contacts the taxpayer posing as an employee of a debt collection agency working on behalf of the IRS. They ask the taxpayer to take certain steps to return the refund, but actually the refund goes to the criminals.
IRS guidance to taxpayers who are victims asks them to contact the Automated Clearing House (ACH) department of the bank/financial institution where the direct deposit was received and have them return the refund to the IRS. The IRS also asks the taxpayers to call the agency toll-free at (800) 829-1040 (individual) or (800) 829-4933 (business) to explain why the direct deposit is being returned.
There is more information for taxpayers at Tax Topic Number: 161 - Returning an Erroneous Refund.
Source: Federal Reserve Banks
IRS-Impersonation Telephone Scams
A sophisticated phone scam targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, has been making the rounds throughout the country. Callers claim to be IRS employees, using fake names and bogus IRS identification badge numbers. They may know a lot about their targets, and they usually alter the caller ID to make it look like the IRS is calling.
Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a gift card or wire transfer. Victims may be threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license. In many cases, the caller becomes hostile and insulting. Victims may be told they have a refund due to try to trick them into sharing private information. If the phone isn't answered, the scammers often leave an “urgent” callback request.
Note that the IRS doesn't:
• Call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. Generally, the IRS will first mail you a bill if you owe any taxes.
• Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
• Demand payment without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
• Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
Stolen Mail - Don't mail out your checks or gift cards in your regular mailbox. Use the blue boxes, post office, and maybe your work outgoing mail. We have seen increase in washed checks, stolen gift cards, and duplicated checks.
Phone Scams - If you answer a call from an unfamiliar caller and this is the first thing you hear “Can you hear me?” hang up immediately. Do not reply! CBS News reports that potential hackers on the other end of the line can record your response and use it to authorize charges via credit cards or bills. They only need to capture your voice uttering the word "yes" to be successful, which means any yes or no question can work. To lower your risk, don’t answer calls from unfamiliar numbers, even if they’re from a familiar area code — and/or hang up immediately if you’re asked a yes or no question. And if you’ve already received this type of call? Carefully monitor your credit and debit card charges — and your credit reports.
Fake Employment Scams – Stay away from job posting wanting you make deposit or purchase cashier checks for money. You should not give personal information or make deposits for strangers. You can lose a lot of money and become a victim of identity theft. Spends some time researching the jobs/companies from other search engines. Sometimes criminals use real company names and logos but post fake jobs.
Signs that they are fake:
Wanting you to deposit cashier checks in order to transfer money or send them a check back
If you have to pay up-front for “equipment or training”
They need your bank account for direct deposit
Quick cash or high pay for an easy job
The company only has a PO Box, no street address
The company name is not in the URL or email address
Cash Back Scam – another scam is people will offer to buy an item you have for sell with a cashier or bank check that is over the amount of the agreed sale price. They will ask for cash back for the difference of the check. When the check does not clear, you just paid the criminals to steal your sale item. Before accepting or depositing checks you can call the financial institution for authenticity.
Skimmers – This device can hidden on ATMs and gas station pumps to steal your debit and credit card information. Some of them even have hidden cameras to catch you entering you PIN. Covering the keyboard as you enter your PIN is a simple way to help avoid theft. Never give your PIN to anyone. And, do not use any ATM with a card reader that appears altered.
Text - Thieves are now texting people posing as their financial institution, saying that their cards have been frozen, and in order to reactivate them, they need to input their account information immediately. Don’t. Instead, contact us directly or the number on the back of your card, we don’t text card or account information.