Identity Theft

Protect yourself against identity theft
Identity theft is a serious crime. It occurs when your personal information is stolen and used, without your knowledge, to commit fraud or other crimes. Identity theft will not only cost you your time and money, it can also destroy your credit and ruin your good name. 

Skilled identity thieves use a variety of methods to steal your personal information, including: 
 

Dumpster Diving – This term refers to individuals who rummage through trash looking for bills or other documentation with your personal information on it. 


Skimming – Stealing credit/debit card numbers by using a special storage device when processing your card. 


Phishing - Thieves pretend to be financial institutions or companies and send spam or pop-up messages to get you to reveal your personal information. 


Changing Your Address - Your billing statements are diverted to another location by completing a "Change of Address" form. 


Physical Stealing - They steal wallets and purses, mail, including bank and credit card statements, pre-approved credit card offers, and new checks or tax return information. They may even steal personnel records from their employer or bribe employees who have access.