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Federal Deposit
Insurance Corporation

Each depositor insured to at least $250,000 per insured bank

Consumer Protection Topics - Identity Theft

Identity Theft, Frauds, and Scams Basics

Identity theft involves a crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person's personal data to open fraudulent credit card accounts, charge existing credit card accounts, withdraw funds from deposit accounts, or obtain new loans. A victim's losses may include not only out-of-pocket financial losses but also substantial costs to restore credit history and to correct erroneous information in their credit reports.

Frauds and scams defraud millions of people every year, often starting with an e-mail, text message, or phone message that appears to be from a legitimate, trusted organization.  The message typically asks consumers to verify or update personal information.  Similarly, criminals create bogus websites for such things as credit repair services in the hopes that consumers will enter personal information.

Reporting fraud promptly improves your chances of recovering what you have lost and helps law enforcement authorities stop scams before others are victimized. If you are the victim of a scam and you suspect a law has been violated, contact your state, local, or federal consumer protection agency. The agency you contact first may take action directly or refer you to another agency better positioned to protect you.  Also, a local law enforcement officer may be able to provide advice and assistance.

Violations of federal laws should be reported to the federal agency responsible for enforcement. Complaints are used to document patterns of abuse, allowing the agency to take action against a company.

People who have no intention of delivering what is sold, who misrepresent items, send counterfeit goods or otherwise try to trick you out of your money are committing fraud. If you suspect fraud, there are some additional steps to take.

How to Avoid Identity Theft

The best protection against identity theft is to carefully protect your personal information, for example:

How to Avoid Frauds & Scams

There are numerous scams presented daily to consumers so you must always exercise caution when it comes to your personal and financial information. The following tips may help prevent you from becoming a fraud victim.

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