Midwesterners, Wisconsinites in particular, are often friendly, trusting and willing to help a stranger. But sometimes these great traits can backfire. Here are some tips to help you remain vigilant in protecting your identity:
- Be aware of phone scams. The phone call from Nigeria requesting money to get a grandchild out of jail has been around for years, but some scams are less well known and seemingly innocent. If you are contacted by a charity claiming to do wonderful work, don’t take their message at face value. You can check to see if they are listed on the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions’ list of registered charitable organizations: https://www.wdfi.org/ice/berg/Registration/Search.aspx.
- Always check your bank statements. The only way to know if your debit card information has been stolen is to to review your debit card and credit card statements on a regular basis. With today’s technology, you can view your account activity via mobile banking, internet banking & phone banking.
- Be careful when disclosing your social security number & other personal information. Some entities such as tax preparers, investment professionals, insurers and medical offices have a reason to need your social security number, birth date and other personal information. Make sure you are the one making the contact and know who you are talking to before disclosing any personal information.
- Be Cyber-Secure Savvy. Ladysmith Federal has very secure systems in place to protect your personal information. Ask us about our cyber-security preparedness!
- Utilize a paper shredder instead of the garbage. Be careful what you through away in the garbage. Shred anything with your name, address or any other personal information on it.