Protecting Your Identity
Report a Lost or Stolen Debit Card
To report a lost or stolen debit card:
During banking hours, call 580-323-2345.
After banking hours, call 1-800-264-4274.
Your Check Has Been Declined
Your check being declined by a merchant is not necessarily reason to fret. Here are some things you should know about merchants declining checks.
- It is not the bank that declined your check. The bank was never contacted by the merchant about accepting your check.
- Merchants use check processing agencies. The merchant’s check processing agency is the one that declined your check.
- Check processing agencies use the routing number, account number, and driver’s license number to reference their database.
Possible reasons that your check was declined:
- The cashier entered your driver’s license number incorrectly. The incorrect driver’s license number that was entered belongs to someone who has a bad check record with the check processing agency.
- A driver’s license number associated with your account has a bad check record with the check processing agency. For example: someone else authorized to write checks on your checking account has written checks on your account. The other person on your account writing checks on your account and submitting their driver’s license number with your checking account ties their bad check record to your account number.
- You have been reported to the check processing agency for writing bad checks. The only time Oklahoma Bank & Trust reports bad check activity to a check processing agency is if your account has been closed for being overdrawn. Another bank or merchant may have reported you for bad check writing.
Consumer FFIEC Notice
Commercial FFIEC Notice
Identity theft occurs when thieves steal your personal information (e.g., your Social Security number (SSN), birth date, credit card numbers, personal identification numbers (PINs, or passwords). With sufficient information, another person can become you and use your identity to commit fraud or other crimes.
How to Avoid Identity Theft
- Protect your SSN, credit card and debit card numbers, PINs, passwords, and other personal information.
Never provide this information in response to an unwanted telephone call, fax, letter, or email, no matter how friendly or official the circumstances may appear. Be mindful of those who may be “shoulder surfing” (or trying to look over your shoulder) while you use the ATM, and seeking to steal your PIN. In case your wallet is lost or stolen, carry only the identification you really need: checks, credit cards, or debit cards. Keep the rest, including your Social Security card, in a safe place. Do not preprint your SSN, telephone number, or driver’s license number on your checks. You do not have to give merchants your Social Security number. Ask the merchant to use another form of identification that does not include your SSN (e.g., a passport).
- Protect your incoming and outgoing mail.
For incoming mail: Try to use a locked mailbox or other secure location (e.g., a post office box). If your mailbox is not locked or in a secure location, try to promptly remove mail that has been delivered or move the mailbox to a safer place. When ordering new checks, ask about having the checks delivered to your bank branch instead of having them mailed to your home where you run the risk of a thief finding them outside your front door.
For outgoing mail containing a check or personal information: Try to deposit it in a United States (U.S.) Postal Service blue collection box, hand it to a mail carrier, or take it to the post office instead of leaving it in your doorway or home mailbox. A mailbox that holds your outgoing bills is a prime target for thieves who cruise neighborhoods looking for account information. Avoid putting up the flag on a mailbox to indicate that outgoing mail is waiting.
- Sign up for direct deposit.
Sign up for direct deposit of your paycheck, retirement check, or state or federal benefits, (e.g., Social Security). Direct deposit prevents someone from stealing a check out of your mailbox and forging your signature to access your money. Direct deposit is also beneficial in the event of a disaster.
- Keep your financial trash “clean.”
Thieves known as dumpster divers pick through garbage looking for pieces of paper containing SSNs, bank account information, and other details they can use to commit fraud. What is your best protection against dumpster divers? Before tossing out these items, destroy them, preferably using a crosscut shredder that turns paper into confetti that cannot be easily reconstructed.
- Keep a close watch on your bank account statements and credit card bills.
Monitor these statements each month and contact your financial institution immediately if there is a discrepancy in your records or if you notice something suspicious (e.g., a missing payment or an unauthorized withdrawal). Contact your institution if a bank statement or credit card bill does not arrive on time. Missing financially related mail could be a sign someone has stolen your mail and/or account information, and may have changed your mailing address to run up bills in your name from another location.
- Avoid identity theft on the Internet.
As we mentioned in the section on Computer/Internet Scams, never provide bank account or other personal information in response to an unsolicited email, or when visiting a website that does not explain how personal information will be protected. Legitimate organizations would not ask you for these details because they already have the necessary information, or can obtain it in other ways. If you believe the email is fraudulent, consider bringing it to the attention of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) via its online complaint form: www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov.
If you do open and respond to a phony email, contact your financial institution immediately and follow the steps listed in the FTC brochures listed at the end of this Participant Guide. For more about avoiding phishing scams, visit http://onguardonline.gov/articles/0003-phishing.
- Review your credit report annually and report fraudulent activity.
Review your credit report carefully for warning signs of actual or potential identity theft. For example, items that include mention of a credit card, loan, or lease you never signed up for, and requests for a copy of your credit report from someone you do not recognize could be a sign that a con artist is snooping around for personal information. To obtain a free copy of your credit report, visit www.annualcreditreport.com
Fraud Alert: Social Security Administration
The Inspector General for the Social Security Administration (SSA) is warning the public, and Social Security beneficiaries in particular, to be aware of fraud scams that target personal information.
In the most recent scam, identity thieves obtain the personal information of Social Security beneficiaries and use that information to attempt to open a 'my Social Security' account on SSA's website. If successful, they then use that account to redirect the beneficiary's direct deposit benefits to an account controlled by the thief.
This should in no way discourage people from using SSA's 'my Social Security' feature, which enables the public to view their earnings history and estimated benefits, and allows beneficiaries to obtain a host of services online; in fact establishing your account eliminates the risk of a new account being opened by an identity thief. This type of crime does, however, serve as a reminder to protect your personal information as you would any other thing of value. Once thieves have your personal information, they can use it to open credit accounts, buy homes, claim tax refunds, and commit other types of fraud.
If you receive information from SSA indicating that you have opened a 'my Social Security' account, and you did not open an account, you should contact Social Security so that appropriate action may be taken, and the matter may be referred to the Office of the Inspector General. You can do so by visiting or calling a local SSA office or calling SSA's toll free customer service at 1-800-772-1213. Deaf or hearing-impaired individuals can call Social Security's TTY number at 1-800-325-0778.
Get more information on identity theft
Visit the FTC’s Identity Theft website at www.ftc.gov/idtheft for information on how to minimize your risk or call them at1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338).
Identity Theft: If You Think You May Be a Victim
If you believe you are a victim of identity theft, the FTC recommends that you immediately take the following actions:
- Place an initial fraud alert with one of the three nationwide credit reporting companies
- Order your credit reports
- Create an identity theft report
- Consider placing an extended fraud alert or security freeze on your credit report to limit the circumstances under which a credit reporting company may release your credit report.
For more information: http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0279-extended-fraud-alerts-and-credit-freezes
The FTC has many resources available to help you. Call the FTC’s Identity Theft Hotline at 1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338) or visit www.ftc.gov/idtheft . Its online toolkit includes:
- A brochure covering the basics ̶ Identity Theft: What To Know, What To Do
- A detailed guide for protecting your information, with instructions and sample letters to help identity theft victims ̶ Taking Charge: What to Do If Your Identity Is Stolen
Sample letters to help you dispute unauthorized charges or the opening of new accounts in your name. Sample letters and forms are available at http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0281-sample-letters-and-forms-victims-identity-theft
Source: Money Smart for Older Adults, June 2013
Reporting Financial Exploitation and Other Forms of Abuse
If someone is in immediate danger, dial 911 or your local police department.
Adult Protective Services
Telephone numbers vary by location
or call for contact information for your area:
A [state or local] government agency, generally a part of your county or state department of social services, that investigates abuse, neglect or exploitation of older adults, or younger adults who have disabilities.
Federal Trade Commission
The FTC online toolkit includes a detailed guide for protecting your information, with instructions and sample letters to help identity theft victims ̶ Taking Charge: What to Do If Your Identity Is Stolen. An online complaint form is available directly at www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov.
Legal advice or representation. How can I find an attorney who specializes in elder law issues?
Federally funded legal assistance programs for people 60 and older (known as Title IIIB legal services programs) can provide legal assistance on issues such as income security, health care, long-term care, nutrition, housing, utilities, protective services, defense of guardianship, abuse, neglect, and age discrimination. Legal assistance is targeted towards older individuals in social and economic need. Each program has its own priorities and eligibility guidelines regarding case acceptance and areas of representation.
Your senior legal aid program may be located at your local legal services program. You can also find out about your local legal assistance programs by contacting your area agency on aging or www.eldercarelocator.gov.
If you need a private attorney to assist you with making a power of attorney, trust, will or other advance planning tool, contact the lawyer referral service of your state bar association.
National Domestic Violence Hotline
The Hotline is a nonprofit organization that provides crisis intervention, information and referral to victims of domestic violence, and their friends and families. You can reach the Hotline 24 hours a day.
Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP)
The SMP programs, also known as Senior Medicare Patrol programs, help Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries avoid, detect, and prevent health care fraud. SMPs nationwide recruit and teach nearly 5,700 volunteers every year to help in this effort. Most SMP volunteers are both retired and Medicare beneficiaries and thus well-positioned to assist you. Visit the website above or call for more information or to get contact information for your state SMP.
Social Security Administration
Toll free customer service at 1-800-772-1213. Deaf or hearing-impaired individuals can call Social Security's TTY number at 1-800-325-0778.
Source: Money Smart for Older Adults, June 2013