Identity Prevention and Security Tips
Identity theft is when someone else uses your name, Social Security Number, and/or other personal information to steal from you.
According to U.S. Department of Justice statistics, every 60 seconds about 28 people become victims of identity theft. The silver lining to this gloomy statistic is that you have more control over prevention than you may think.
At MIT Federal Credit Union, we take the responsibility of protecting your personal information very seriously, and we encourage you to take care with your personal information. Following these steps will help you keep your identity your own.
PREVENT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION FROM BEING LOST OR STOLEN
- Through your mail or trash:
Shred all mail or documents with personal information on it. Sign up for MITFCU e-Statements and e-Bills (online bill pay). Since 90 percent of data comprised is through traditional offline channels and not via the Internet, e-Statements and online bill pay drastically reduce the amount of paperwork with your personal information.
- Through electronic methods:
Always be highly suspicious of e-mails, text messages, or other calls and messages that ask you to provide sensitive personal and account information. Rather than provide information, call MITFCU or any company you do business with directly and verify the validity of the message. MITFCU will NEVER call or e-mail you asking you for your account information. If you are ever suspicious, call our Member Services department at 617.253.2845 or e-mail us at email@example.com.
- By an employee of a business you deal with:
Be careful about who you do business with and only reveal personal information that is absolutely necessary for the transaction you are doing. MITFCU employees are trained professionals, and MITFCU has procedures in place to monitor employee activity to prevent security breaches.
- If your purse or wallet is lost or stolen:
Don't carry your Social Security card, passport, or birth certificate in your purse or wallet. Keep them in a safe place at home. Reduce the number of credit cards you carry, and keep an emergency phone list to contact if your cards are lost or stolen. For MITFCU ATM or Debit Cards, call 800.264.5578 (701.461.0621 internationally). For MITFCU Visa Credit Cards, call 800.234.5354.
Plus, experienced fraud analysts work around the clock, watching for suspicious card activity. They will contact you immediately if they detect potential fraud on your card. So if you ever get a call from "Fraud Prevention Services" or "FALCON", know that our watchdogs are doing their job and preventing potential fraudulent use of your card. Fraud is serious business, and can hit any time. That is why we are always on guard to detect and prevent fraud from happening to you.
Monitor your credit report for fraudulent activity
Stay alert to illegal use of your information by checking your credit report each year. The Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACTA) allows you to receive a FREE copy of your credit report from each reporting agency every 12 months by going to annualcreditreport.com or calling 877.322.8228.As another line of defense, MITFCU debit cards are protected by FraudWatch® PLUS and Visa credit cards are protected by the FALCON Alert System.
PROTECT YOUR MOBILE DEVICE
To ensure that data accessed through your mobile device is secure, especially in the event that it is misplaced, stolen or believed to be compromised. We recommend:
- A "PIN" code should be used. It is recommended that the pin be a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters
- The timeout for the PIN should be set
- Passwords should be changed periodically, recommended time is every 3 months
- Determine if encryption is enabled on the device
- Installing anti-virus software
OTHER IMPORTANT CONTACT INFORMATION
Equifax: Fraud Line: 800.525.6285
Experian: Fraud Line: 800.397.3742
Transunion: Fraud Line: 800.680.7289
Federal Trade Commission (FTC): Fraud Line: 1-877-IDTHEFT
TO LEARN MORE: Click the links below to watch informational videos on security topics.