Fraud Can Happen to You When You Least Expect It

At BLC Community Bank we have tips and resources to empower you in the fight against fraud. And the more you understand about fraud, the better prepared you are to help us fight fraud and keep your financial accounts safe.

 

Easy ways to protect yourself.

We recommend the following tips to protect yourself and your financial information from fraud:

  • Use and update firewall software to protect your computer information.
  • Password protect your financial accounts. A strong password contains:
    • More than eight characters
    • A capital letter
    • At least one numeric number or non-alphabetical character
  • Never provide or confirm personal information such as card numbers, social security numbers, information on the card or your PIN unless you know who you’re dealing with or initiated the contact.
  • Store sensitive documents in a secure place.
  • Shred sensitive materials before disposal.

 

Keep your eyes open for fraud.

It’s important to monitor your financial information and keep your eyes open for fraud. These simple steps can make a big difference in the security of your financial information.

You’re entitled to one free credit report a year. Use your credit report to monitor:

  • Your identification
  • Unfamiliar accounts or charges
  • Suspicious activity

Watch your bank account and monthly statements closely and know your billing cycles.

Be vigilant at ATMs. If something seems suspicious contact your financial institution.

  • Cover the pin-pad with your hand while entering a PIN.
  • Use familiar ATMs in well-lit areas.
  • Watch for shoulder surfing — a camera positioned to obtain your card number.
  • Look for skimmers placed over the ATM card slot.

 

Necessary steps to take if you detect fraud.

If you suspect fraud, contact BLC Community Bank and the SHAZAM Fraud Department immediately. Then, follow these steps to get your life back on track:

  1. Place a fraud alert on your credit reports.
    • When you place an alert on your credit, this will prevent any other accounts from being opened.
    • You can request a report to see if any charges seem suspicious.
  2. Contact your bank if you think your accounts could be affected.
    • Follow-up in writing with copies of any supporting documents.
    • Ask us for the correct paperwork to dispute existing debits on your accounts, or any newly opened accounts.
  3. File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at 877.438.4338 or ftc.gov/idtheft
    • When you file with the FTC, you’re providing information to help law enforcement officials track down thieves.
    • Print your ID theft affidavit from the FTC and take it to the local police
  4. File a report with the local police.
    • Filing a police report, along with a complaint to the FTC, can add safeguards to ensure your identity can be protected and restored.

 

Other important numbers and websites include:

  • SHAZAM
    Lost or stolen card 800.383.8000
    SHAZAM Fraud 866.508.2693
    shazam.net
 
  • U.S. foreign travel information
    888.407.4747
    travel.state.gov
 
  • Federal Trade Commission
    877.438.4338
    ftc.gov/idtheft

  • Annual Credit Report
    877.322.8228
    annualcreditreport.com
 
Credit bureaus
 
  • Equifax
    Place an alert 800.525.6285
    800.685.1111
    equifax.com 
 
  • Experian
    888.397.3742
    experian.com
 
  • Trans Union
    800.916.8800
    transunion.com

 

Fraud can happen when you least expect it. Stay alert and be attentive. Contact us if you have any questions or for other ways you can be proactive and keep your financial accounts safe.

 Article provided by www.shazam.net