Identity Theft


Keep Your Personal and Card Information Safe

A major benefit included FREE with Smart and Crimson Checking accounts and available at discounted rates for eChecking accounts is access to IDSafeChoice's Identity theft protection. For more information click here.

The number and sophistication of identity theft scams is increasing. While online banking and e-commerce is very safe, as a general rule you should be careful about giving out your personal information over the internet.

Phishing

Phishing attacks use 'spoofed' emails and fraudulent websites designed to fool recipients into divulging personal financial data such as credit card numbers, account usernames and passwords, social security numbers, PINs, etc. By hijacking the trusted brands of well-known financial institutions, online retailers and credit card companies, phishers are able to convince recipients to respond to them. Never give out your PIN (personal identification number). University Credit Union or e-commerce retailers will NEVER ask for your PIN.

How to avoid Phishing scams

  • Be suspicious of any email with urgent requests for personal financial information. Phisher emails are typically NOT personalized, while valid messages from your financial institution or e-commerce company generally are addressed formally and personalized.
  • DO NOT use the links in an email to get to a web page, if you suspect the message might not be authentic. Instead, call the company on the telephone, or log on to the website directly by typing in the web address into your browser.
  • Always ensure that you are using a secure web site when submitting credit card or other sensitive information via your web browser. To make sure you're on a secure web server, check the beginning of the Web address in your browsers address bar - it should be "https://" rather than just "http://".
  • Regularly log onto your online accounts. Don't leave it for as long as a month before you check each account. Also check your credit and debit card statements to ensure that all transactions are legitimate. If anything is suspicious, contact the University Credit Union and all card issuers.
  • Ensure that your browser is up to date and security patches applied. In particular, people who use the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser should immediately go to the Microsoft Security home page— http://www.microsoft.com/security/ —to download a special patch relating to certain phishing schemes.
  • Consider installing a web browser tool bar to help protect you from known phishing fraud websites. Earthlink scam blocker is part of free browser toolbar that alerts you before you visit a page that's on Earthlink's list of known fraudulent phisher websites.
  • Always report "phishing" or "spoofed" emails to your financial institutions.

Vishing

Recently, some scammers have started using phone calls to trick consumers into giving out account information. The scam is a variation of phishing and is called "vishing" – short for "voice phishing."

There are two types of vishing. The first is a spam email that includes a phone number that you are asked to call with your information. The other newer version is a phone call and can be a "live" person or a recorded message. Many consumers don't stop to consider if they're being scammed and just give out sensitive account information.

With just a few pointers, you can easily avoid vishing:

  • If an email or phone call doesn't use your full name, it may be a scam.
  • Be skeptical of unsolicited calls and emails. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Don't use the number provided in the call or email. Use the number on your University Credit Union account statement or credit card instead.
  • If you're asked for sensitive information, hang up.

Smishing

A type of fraud that scammers are using called "smishing" is gaining prominence as a way to fraudulently obtain consumers' personal information.

Smishing is text message fraud that occurs when criminals, posing as financial institutions, attempt to dupe mobile phone users into sending personal information through text messages. If you receive any such messages, do NOT click the links or call the numbers provided. Instead, immediately delete the message from your phone.


University Credit Union reminds you that we'll NEVER email or telephone you to ask for your account information. If you suspect you have received a fraudulent email or phone call claiming to be from University Credit Union, please notify us immediately at (801) 481-8800 or at abuse@ucreditu.com.


More Info

If you are a victim of an attack on your personal information or attempted identity theft, call the Social Security Administration Fraud Line at 1-800-269-0271.



Check Your Credit

Monitoring and periodically reviewing your credit report is an effective tool in fighting identity theft. You can get a free credit report once a year from any of these three credit reporting agencies:


Learn more about how to check your credit here.