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             18 January, 2022
 

    
Category:  Articles » Legal » Identity-Theft

 

Phishing - Who's Trying To Rob You Blind!

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         Views: 1816
2007-02-20 07:21:23     
Article by Beth Gabriel

Beware! Someone is Phishing for your Personal Financial Information


4 Things You Must Do Now to Protect Yourself Against Internet Thieves

What is phishing?

Phishing is pronounced just like the sport used to catch a fish on a hook - fishing. And that's exactly what thieves are trying to do to you - hook onto your personal financial information.

What personal financial information are they looking for?

Anything and everything - store account numbers, passwords, bank account numbers, credit card numbers and Social Security numbers are just a few. Thieves look for any numbers they can steal to run up your credit card or empty out your bank account.

Are there other, less obvious methods that thieves can use that might go unnoticed for a number of months?

Yes, with your personal financial information, thieves can obtain a new credit card or take out a loan without you even being aware of it until the bills start coming in. They can even secure a driver's license in your name! The damage that this can do to you personally and financially can take you years to recover from.

How might someone try to trick you into unwittingly giving away your personal financial information? You might receive an email from your financial institutional or another trusted company that you recognize and do business with (this has been especially common with eBay and PayPal). This email will warn you of some serious problem that needs your immediate attention and strongly encourages you to click a link in the email to correct the problem. STOP! Do not click any link in an email that warns of dire consequences no matter how 'real' the email looks. Instead find the phone number or website information on the monthly statements that you receive from your financial institution. Then call or logon using the legitimate contact information. It's important that you are the one initiating the call, don't fall for clicking a link in an email.

What can be done to protect yourself against phishing?

1. Never give your financial information to anyone over the phone or internet if it is an unexpected, unsolicited request.
2. Even if you think that the phone call or email that is requesting information is legitimate, call your bank directly to make sure.
3. Don't give anyone your password over the phone or in response to an email. Your bank would never ask you to verify your information in this way. Thieves who are successful in obtaining your password can easily help themselves to your savings account.
4. Review your printed and online financial statements regularly - at least once a month. The sooner that you can catch a thief at work, the less damage they can do.

What can you do if you unknowingly gave away personal financial information?

1. Contact your bank, store or credit card company immediately. They will be able to instantly put a hold on your account to stop any further damage.
2. Contact any one of the three major credit bureaus and ask whether you should put a fraud alert on your file. Why? This will prevent a thief from opening a new bank account or credit card using your information. Here are the numbers to call.

a. Equifax : 1-800-525-6285
b. Experian: 1-888-397-3742
c. TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289

Specialized in: Prepaid Legal - Legal Services - Prepaid Legal Services - Pre Paid Legal - Identity Theft Protection
URL: http://www.prepaid-legal-help-4u.com
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