How-to: Tips on Protecting Your Identity; Arvest Family IDProtect™ Now Available!

Tuesday, November 22 at 07:07 AM
Category: Personal Finance

Did you know that identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States?  Did you also know that more than 11 million Americans were victims of identity theft in 2009?  These facts are only two of many red flags that should serve as your sign to become proactive about protecting yourself against this infectious crime. 

Tip #1:  Get Arvest Family IDProtect™.

Arvest Family IDProtect™ is now offered to you as a simple solution to aid in protecting not only yourself, but your family too. Family IDProtect™ is one of the features of our new myBlue Personal Checking account available with a low monthly fee of only $6 a month. To learn more about myBlue Checking and its features, click here. For customers who have Arvest Club Checking and Preferred Club Checking, this new service has automatically been added to your account. You may also purchase Family IDProtect™ to add to other accounts, such as Free Blue Checking.

To learn more about Family IDProtect and how to get it, click here.

Tip #2:  Know the Threats.

Think like a thief. Knowing where and how identity thieves gain hold of your information is a vital tool to protecting yourself.  Common practices that you should be aware of include:

  • Stealing wallets or purses with everything in them.
  • Taking mail from your mailbox, especially bank statements and credit card statements.
  • Diverting your mail by using a change of address form at the Post Office.
  • Searching through your trash for tossed copies of statements.
  • Posing as a representative of your financial institution on the phone and asking about your account.

Tip #3: Play Defense. 

Circling back to the first tip, adding Arvest Family IDProtect™ is priority.  However, it’s smart to become accustomed to doing the following (easy) tips to safeguard your identity even more:

  • Carry as few credit cards as possible and periodically check to make sure you still have them.
  • Avoid carrying your social security card and passport unless they are needed.
  • Shred all important papers that contain financial information before disposing of them.
  • Consider signing up for e.Statements and online BillPay to reduce the number of statements in your mailbox.
  • Make your PIN and passwords hard for someone else to guess. Don’t use your birth date, phone number or last four digits of your social security number.
  • Never give personal information over the phone unless you made the call or you know with whom you are speaking.
  • Review your financial and credit card statements carefully for unknown transactions. If you see one, call immediately.

While there are no guarantees that these steps will prevent identity thieves from attacking you, the harder you make it to steal your identity, the less likely you are to become an identity theft victim. Becoming a victim of identity theft can take years to recover from.  By adding Family IDProtect™ to your account, your mind can be at ease knowing that you have protection.  If you are interested in having Family IDProtect™ with your account or would like to learn more, please visit www.arvest.com or a nearby branch.

(By clicking on external links, please be aware you will be leaving the Arvest website.)

Tags: Consumer Protection, Financial Education, IDProtect
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