COVID-19 has changed quite a bit of what we do in our everyday life, In fact, many of us are trying to find new and unique ways to celebrate the holidays this year. But one thing has not changed — increased fraud during the holidays. Whether you’re shopping online, using an ATM, or buying something at a store, there are basic strategies you can take to protect your money and your identity.
When shopping online…
When shopping at a store or using an ATM…
- Change your logins and passwords regularly and avoid storing your passwords on different websites.
- Pay for online purchases using a credit card as you may get more protection from the law in that way.
- Don’t pay for anything online using public WiFi.
- Review your accounts regularly and report any suspicious activity immediately to your financial institution.
When you’re at home…
- Use a chip-enabled card whenever possible, as this decreases the opportunity for fraudulent activity on your account.
- Cover the number pad whenever you enter your PIN at a point-of-sale terminal or an ATM.
- Don’t use an ATM that looks like someone has tampered with the keypad in some way.
- Avoid using an ATM alone at night and check your surroundings to see if anyone is nearby while entering your PIN and taking out cash.
- Monitor your credit report at least annually. You can access your free credit report once a year at www.annualcreditreport.com.
- Shred sensitive documents containing personal information, such as Social Security or account numbers.
- Never share personal information with anyone who calls, texts, or sends an email —even if they seem legitimate. If you don’t initiate the call, don’t give the information requested.
- Keep all your financial records in a secure location. Don’t write your PIN or passwords down or carry them with you.
- Use online banking and mobile banking alerts to warn of account use or possible suspicious account activity.
- Never share your credit or debit card number with a friend or family member — it’s just not good practice.
By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to protecting your money and your identity. If one of your SCCCU accounts has been compromised, give us a call immediately