Preventing Fraud & Identity Theft
The sooner fraud is detected, the lower the financial impact. Often the victim is the first person to discover fraudulent activity. Follow these suggestions to recognize the warning signs of identity theft:
Monitor your accounts
Check your account activity frequently for anything unusual and contact your financial institution immediately if you see anything suspicious. If you suspect that any of your accounts with LBS Financial have been compromised, please notify us immediately at 800.527.3328.
Enroll in online alerts
We recommend enrolling in alerts via your LBS Financial Online or Mobile Banking profile. This includes signing up for email or text alerts that notify you when certain events occur such as logins into your account, username/password changes & contact information changes. It’s also helpful to set up threshold alerts to notify you of low account balances or unusually high account transactions. Alerts like these can help signal fraudulent spending, so you can put a stop to it quickly.
Be aware of scams
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Scams are not only limited to the internet. Criminals also use phone, text, social media, and email scams to gain personal information and commit fraud and identity theft. Please see the “Avoiding Scams” tab for up-to-date examples of ongoing scams.
Use a credit monitoring service
Consider signing up for a credit monitoring service that notifies you when changes are posted to your credit report. This is one of the fastest ways to find out if someone has opened new accounts in your name.
Stay in the know
Stay in the know about the latest scams and tactics by visiting Onguard Online. This is a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) maintained site that provides practical tips on how to guard against internet fraud, secure your computer, and protect your personal information. It’s also important to take the time to verify any calls or emails that you receive about your finances by contacting your financial institution directly. Locate the contact information from their company website, your online statements, or other materials from the company.
Handling Fraud & Identity Theft
If you suspect you are a victim of identity theft or financial fraud take the following steps immediately.
Report account fraud to your financial institution
If you think your LBS Financial account has been compromised, please call us at 800.527.3328.
Contact the credit reporting agencies to place a fraud alert on your credit report
Report any identity theft incidents as quickly as possible by contacting one of the three major credit bureaus listed below to place a fraud alert on your credit report. In addition, you may also want to consider placing a “security freeze” on your credit on each of the three credit bureaus listed below to help prevent additional unauthorized use of your credit.
Experian – 800.509.8495
Equifax – 866.349.5191
TransUnion – 800.916.8800
Contact the Social Security Administration
If you think your identity or Social Security number has been used without your consent, call the Social Security Administration Fraud hotline at 800.269.0271.
Order a credit report
Review your credit reports carefully looking for any inconsistencies. Verify that your personal information (SSN, mailing address, initials, etc.) is correct. Look through your credit report for accounts you didn’t open or debts you can’t explain. If you find information on your credit report that you think is the result of identity theft, you can ask the credit bureau to remove that information from your credit report.
Continue to check your credit reports periodically, especially for the first year after you discover identity theft, to make sure no new fraudulent activity has occurred. The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires each of the nationwide consumer reporting companies to provide you with a free copy of your credit report, at your request, once every 12 months. You can request your free credit reports online.
Close fraudulent accounts
If you find accounts have been opened in your name without your knowledge contact the company directly and ask to have them closed. Inform the company that the account was opened fraudulently. Keep detailed notes of your conversation and ask for documentation showing the account has been closed.
If you suspect that any of your accounts with LBS Financial have been compromised, please notify us immediately by calling us at 800.527.3328.
File a police report
Contact your local law enforcement agency to file a report to help you with creditors who may need more information.
Personal Security Tips
Protect your security code
Fraudsters may call you pretending to be from LBS Financial and ask for the 5 to 6 digit security code that was just sent to your phone. Don’t be fooled. LBS Financial will never call you and ask for a code.
Keep in mind that LBS Financial will need to verify your identity when you call us directly. To verify it’s you, we might ask questions or send a code to read back to us over the phone. This is the only time we’ll ask for a code over the phone.
Watch out for “smishing” texts
Just like phishing emails, criminals send out fake SMS text messages with a link to a fraudulent website or a phone number to try and collect personal information. LBS Financial will never ask you to confirm or provide personal information in an unsolicited text.
Password protect your mobile device
Set your device to lock when it’s not being used. This will help prevent someone from getting access to your personal data.
Protect your credit card, debit card and PIN
Always keep your credit and debit cards in a safe place. If your card is lost or stolen, contact the issuing company immediately. Memorize your PIN code. Do not write it down or share it with anyone including bank employees or police agencies.
Use caution at the ATM
Be aware of your surroundings at the ATM. Make sure others cannot see the keypad while you’re entering your PIN. If you do print a receipt, take it with you and keep it in safe place. The receipt may contain information about your account balance and a partial account number, which may be used for fraud. When you’re done with your receipts, shred them.
Engage in social media responsibly
Think carefully before you provide personal details on social networks like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Never share information that financial institutions might use to identify you like your Social Security number (including the last 4 digits), date of birth, personal phone number, home address, where you were born or schools you attended. Criminals might use this information to gain access to your account or use it to open accounts in your name.