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Avoiding Identity Theft

Technology is getting more versatile every day, which means cyber criminals are as well. A cyber criminal does not discriminate; no matter your age, demographic, income bracket, or geographical location, your identity and all the sensitive information tied to it is their goal.

There has been a noticeable increase of identity theft throughout 2020 and going into 2021. As we become increasingly more connected virtually and use the beneficial features found in many online banking programs and other data-sensitive industries, that statistic is bound to climb to stratospheric heights.

If you are not technology savvy, the concept of identity theft may both scare and perplex you. Is there a way to better defend against threats to your data security when using applications like online bill pay and e-statements. How about your sensitive personal information in general; what steps can you take to prevent a breach?

Pay Attention To Details

It sounds simple, because it is! Paying attention to details is and always will be a terrific defense against identity theft and other cyber crimes. Not having to save receipts is easy thanks to your local bank or credit card company transitioning to virtual systems; however, it is equally as easy to forget what you have purchased with a credit or debit card, and where.

Paperless is a good plan, but the vacancy once occupied by receipts should be filled with a new routine of checking your bank account online daily. This keeps you attentive to your physical financial activity while familiarizing yourself with your local bank’s online user experience makes it easy to spot a discrepancy with precision.

Ask Questions

Whether applying for a car loan or a new job, your social security number will be requested in a virtual setting on more than one occasion. It is perfectly acceptable and encouraged to inquire about how it is going to be used, or why it is applicable.

If something feels off, or an individual receiving your information is non-responsive or even resistant to letting you know, you have every right to refuse giving it to them. This is your information, and you can respectfully request an answer.

An additional situation where inquiries about your financial records are appropriate is when checking your credit score. You are allowed to receive one free credit report from all three credit bureaus in the United States per year. Take advantage of this to identify potential signs of identity theft and ask trusted professionals questions about the results of your report as needed.

A Trusted Community Bank

For over 75 years, Marseilles Bank has been a trusted community bank based in Marseilles, Illinois. Our team of financial industry professionals specializes in personal banking, business banking, and ensuring our products and services meet the diverse needs of every individual customer. Please visit us during our hours of operation or call us today at 815-795-3900 to speak to one of our financial experts and discover what we can do for you.

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