November 25, 2010
It’s the most wonderful time of year for scam artists and identity thieves. With the holiday shopping season starting, people should be on the look-out for fraud and scams. Protect yourself from credit card and ID theft this Christmas season.
Steps consumers should take to protect against identity theft include:
-Shred financial documents and paperwork with personal information before discarding them.
-Don’t carry your Social Security card in your wallet or write it on a check. Give it out only if absolutely necessary.
-Never give out personal information on the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you know who you are dealing with. Potential thieves will claim to be associated with your bank or credit card company in order to steal your identity.
-Be aware of links sent in unsolicited E-mails, instead type in a web address you know or use firewalls, anti-spyware and anti-virus software to protect your computer.
The Michigan Attorney General’s website provides consumer alerts or information about the most recent or widespread frauds and scams. You can also file a complaint or report identity theft this holiday season with the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division by calling 877-765-8388 or visit www.michigan.gov/ag.
Best wishes this holiday season and happy shopping!