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Tips to Protect Your Money and Identity This Holiday Season!

12/22/2015

The holiday season brings us joy, happiness and time to spend with our friends and family celebrating. It also brings out something not so jolly - scammers.

Shore to Shore wants your holiday season to be merry and bright and for you to not be holding a box of coal when everyone else is putting together their holiday toys.

Protect yourself from some pretty common scams such as:

You get a text from a bank that says you need to confirm your information and they are even helpful by providing a link in the actual text. What do you do? Ignore. Contact your financial institution with phone numbers you are familiar with from your card or bank statement and let them know you received a suspicious text and inquire that your account is safe from the phishing attack. Do not click on links provided emails or text messages.

The IRS calls you saying they need to update their information. What do you do? A good rule of thumb to avoid a lot of phone scams is to not answer your phone if you don’t recognize the number. If they are a scammer, they are either waiting to confirm this is a live number and answering will increase the amount of calls you receive. Plus, scammers won’t normally leave a message. What if you do answer or they leave a message? Do not call back the numbers they provide. Instead look up their number yourself online through the company’s website, government site or the number provided on the back of your card to confirm they did in fact contact you.

You make a lot of credit or debit card purchases during the holidays. How do you protect against fraud? Time can be of the essence. Each day, not just during the holidays, monitor your accounts. Verify purchases or any unusual activity. Pay attention to who has your cards and how long as restaurants can be a prime target for criminals to skim your cards. Shop via trusted online websites.

If you feel you may have been the target of a financial scam, stop in and see a Shore to Shore representative and we can help investigate and walk you through the proper steps to take.



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