Identity Theft & Fraud Prevention Tips
June 2021 Update on Account Takeover Fraud
- Never provide personal information - such as your Social Security Number, account numbers, or passwords - in response to an unsolicited request, whether it is in an email, over the phone, or online. If you do not initiate the communication, do not provide any information.
- Never click on a link provided in an email that you think may be fraudulent. In addition to stealing your personal information, the link may contain a virus that could infect your computer.
- Do not be intimidated by an email or caller who suggests dire consequences if you do not immediately provide or verify financial or personal information.
- If you are unsure whether a contact is legitimate, contact us. You can find phone numbers and addresses at on our Locations & Hours page. The key is that you should be the one to initiate the contact, using information that you have verified yourself.
- Remember that Citizens Bank would never ask you to verify your account information or confirm a password online.
- Review account statements regularly to ensure all charges are correct. If your account statement is late or does not arrive, please call us. Check your account activity online regularly to catch suspicious activity.
- The National Crime Prevention Council has a website full of helpful tools to protect yourself from all types of crime, including fraud. Visit them at www.ncpc.org.
- The FDIC also has a variety of resources on their website to help you protect yourself, including FDIC Consumer News which provides practical guidance on how to become a smarter, safer user of financial services.
- The AARP's Scams & Fraud website has a variety of real-world tips and tools to help protect you and your loved ones.
If you become a victim:
- Contact us immediately to alert us of the situation.
- Close accounts you think have been tampered with or opened fraudulently. Phone the security or fraud department of each associated company or financial institution. Follow-up in writing and supply copies of supporting documents.
- Notify credit card companies and financial institutions in writing. Send your letters by certified mail, return receipt requested, so you can document when and what the company received. Keep copies of your correspondence or enclosures.
- Report all suspicious contacts to the Federal Trade Commission through their website or by phoning 1-877-IDTHEFT (877-438-4338).
- Check with your state Attorney General's office to find out if state law requires the police to take reports for identity theft.
- File a report with local police or police in the community where the identity theft took place. Get a copy of the police report or the report number. It can help you deal with creditors who need proof of the crime. If the police are reluctant to take your report, ask to file a "Miscellaneous Incidents" report.
- Contact one of the major credit bureaus listed below to place a fraud alert on your file. A fraud alert will help prevent thieves from opening a new account in your name.