Reduce Your Risk Of Identity Theft.
During National Protect Your Identity Week October 20-27th
CHICAGO, Oct. 22, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Nowadays it seems like every
member of a family owns a
or tablet, and while convenient,
these devices also offer
the opportunity to help themselves to
your personal information. In fact, 7% of Smartphone owners were victims
of identity fraud last year – this incidence rate is one-third higher
than that of the general public.
“Even though the old-fashioned ways of stealing a person’s
identity are still prevalent, thieves are beginning to focus on the
personal information they can obtain from everyday electronic devices
such as cell phones, PDAs, and even copy machines,” said Mary
BMO Before Market Open
BMO Biometrics Management Office
BMO Ballistic Missile Office
BMO British Mathematical Olympiad
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BMO Business Management Office
Harris Bank Chief Security Officer. “Consumers need to
stay in front of these trends and learn to protect themselves through an
array of different options.”
There are numerous techniques that thieves use when committing
identity theft, from more traditional methods such as stolen wallets, to
emerging methods through the Internet and social media. Biron recommends
taking the following steps to protect you and your family from identity
Safeguard Your Personal Information:
* Carry only necessary identification. Do not carry your Social
Security Card or write your Social Security number on a check.
* Shred papers with any of your personal information – especially
credit card applications.
* If you have the option to choose a password on your accounts,
don’t use your mother’s
A woman’s family name before she is married. Used of a surname that is replaced by a woman when she marries. Also called birth name.
, your birth date, the last
four digits of your Social Security number or your phone number, a
series of consecutive numbers, or a single word that would appear in a
* Retrieve incoming mail as soon as possible from your mailbox. If
you must pay a bill through the mail, use a secure mailbox.
* When mailing your bills, don’t leave payment envelopes
containing checks in your mailbox; use a secure mailbox.
* Don’t give out your Social Security number to anyone unless
you have initiated the contact and know who you are dealing with.
* Be suspicious of telephone, text message or email requests for
Monitor Your Personal Information:
* Review your financial statements carefully. Question transactions
that look unfamiliar. Also, if you don’t receive your statement
when you’re expecting it, contact your financial institution.
* Sign any
cards and credit cards as soon as you receive
* Report stolen/lost checks, debit cards, and credit cards
* Check your credit report at least once a year. Consumers are
eligible for a free credit report annually from each of the three major
credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.Click here for reports
and additional information. Once you get your report, look at it
* Is all your information correct?
* Are there any accounts or addresses that aren’t familiar?
* Does the number of inquiries seem reasonable?
Learn more on how to protect yourself from identity theft.
About BMO Harris Bank Based in Chicago, BMO Harris Bank N.A.
provides a broad range of personal banking products and solutions
through over 600 branches and approximately 1,300 ATMs in Illinois,
Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Nevada, Arizona and
Florida. BMO Harris Bank’s commercial banking team provides a
combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and mid-market focus
throughout the U.S. Deposit and loan products and services provided by
BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member
See Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
. BMO Harris BankSM is a trade name used
by BMO Harris Bank N.A. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group,
financial organization with 1,600 branches, and a
retail deposit base of approximately $180 billion.
SOURCE BMO Harris Bank