How do thieves get your personal information?
Skilled identity thieves use a variety of ways to gain access
to your personal information. The following examples are
ways thieves may attempt to steal your identity:
They rummage through trash looking for bills or other paper with
your personal information on it.
They steal credit/deebit card numbers by using a special storage
device when processing your card. Skimmers can be found
anywhere credit/debit cards can be run including ATMs and
self-pumps at gas stations.
Changing Your Address
They divert your billing statements to another location by
completing a change of address form.
They steal wallets and purses; mail, including bank and credit
card statements; pre-approved credit offers; and new checks or tax
information. They steal personnel records or bribe employees
who have access.
Phishing is fraudulent emails alleging to be from your bank or
a similar trusted source that lures you to a copy cat website (one
that may look just like your bank's site). Once there you are
instructed to "verify" certain information, which is then used to
hijack your accounts and your identity. If you receive a suspicious
email, delete the message and call us to inform us of the email.
Our phone number is 1.888.272.8866.
This is very similar to "phishing". However, smishing is
when an SMS text message is sent to a mobile phone. This text
message will try to get you to give information including a name,
date of birth, address, phone number, social security number,
account number, password, etc. Citizens Security Bank will
never send you a text message asking you to verify
information. If this occurs or you have any questions, please
contact us at 1.888.272.8866.
Pharming is when computer hackers redirect a website to a
false website that looks similar to the original. This
false website will often ask for personal information such as
passwords and credit card numbers. These hackers will use
your information to access your bank account, steal your identity,
or commit other fraud in your name. Please contact us if you
notice any suspicious activity.
Pretext calling is when someone calls the bank and pretends to
be a customer. They will provide certain information to
retrieve more information including biographical and account
information. The bank takes steps to prevent this, such as
giving limited information over the phone. They will also
only give information to those who have identified themselves
correctly. For this reason, you should be very careful with
personal information, PIN numbers, passwords, and so forth so that
it does not end up in the wrong hands.
Keystroke Logging or Keylogging
Keylogging is a method by which fraudsters record your actual
keystrokes and mouse clicks. Key loggers are "Trojan"
software programs that can detect and copy any files opened on your
computer, internet pages visited, information keyed in, and much
more. Passwords and personal information can be stolen using
this method. To protect yourself from fraudsters using
keylogging, make sure your anti-virus and anti-spyware programs are
valid and up to date.
What do thieves do with a stolen
Once they have your personal information, identity thieves use
it in a variety of ways.
Credit card fraud
- They may open new credit card accounts in your name. When they
use the cards and don't pay the bills, the delinquent accounts
appear on your credit report.
- They may change the billing address on your credit card so that
you no longer receive bills, and then run up charges on your
account. Because your bills are now sent to a different address, it
may be some time before you realize there's a problem.
Phone or utilities fraud
- They may open a new phone or wireless account in your name, or
run up charges on your existing account.
- They may use your name to get utility services like
electricity, heating, or cable TV.
- They may create counterfeit checks using your name or account
- They may open a bank account in your name and write bad
- They may clone your ATM or debit card and make electronic
withdrawals your name, draining your accounts.
- They may take out a loan in your name.
Government documents fraud
- They may get a driver's license or official ID card issued in
your name but with their picture.
- They may use your name and Social Security number to get
- They may file a fraudulent tax return using your
- They may get a job using your Social Security number.
- They may rent a house or get medical services using your
- They may give your personal information to police during an
arrest. If they don't show up for their court date, a warrant for
arrest is issued in your name.