Keeping your identity safe
Anyone who shops on the internet or uses cards for transactions is potentially susceptible to identity theft.
Reduce your chances of falling victim
- Keep personal documents in a safe, lockable place
- Shred unwanted documents such as old bills and bank statements
- If your passport, driving licence or other important documents are lost or stolen, contact the issuer immediately
- Cancel lost or stolen cards immediately
- Check your bank and credit card statements carefully. Report any suspicious transactions to your bank.
- Use passwords with a combination of letters, characters and numbers
- Memorise passwords and PINs, and never keep a copy in your purse or wallet
- Use different passwords or PINs for different accounts
- Change passwords regularly
- Ensure you have up to date security and a personal firewall installed on your computer
- If you receive a suspicious email asking for personal details, do not respond. Visit Banksafeonline for further advice
- Only conduct transaction on secure websites (look for the padlock)
- Never use a public computer to access personal information.
Where possible, remove yourself from mailing lists.
When moving house:
- Inform you bank and other card issuers immediately
- Arrange for Royal Mail to redirect your post to your new address for at least a year.
Keep a regular check
Request a regular copy of your personal credit file from a credit reference agency. This will show if someone has applied for credit in your name.
Report fraud and internet crime
You can report fraud using the Action Fraud online fraud reporting service 24/7. They also provide help and advice over the phone through the Action Fraud contact centre, call 0300 123 2040.
The little book of big scams is a guide on how to avoid some of the most common scams, produced by the Metropolitan Police.
This is a repeat problem across Surrey that primarily targets vulnerable people within the community. It consists of a telephone call being made by someone pretending to be from the police or bank, asking the victim for personal details such as card details or for them to withdraw cash, then a courier being sent to collect either cash or card from the victim.
These fraudsters use convincing tactics to appear plausible.
How to protect yourself, or someone you love from courier fraud
- Don’t give personal details, bank cards, or money to someone you don’t know.
- If you’re asked to call someone back, hang up and wait 5 minutes before calling back or use a mobile phone
- Stickers from the Trading Standards fraud sticker pack can be put on telephones, cheque books and computers as a reminder not to give out details. You can pop in to your local police front counter to collect one or request one from Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 03454 04 05 06
- trueCall provide hardware that can block unwanted telephone calls including nuisance and scam calls.
- Registering with the Telephone Preference Service can reduce the number of unwanted calls you receive. Registration is completely free. Call them on 0345 070 0707.
- Registering with the Mail Preference Service can reduce the quantity of unsolicited mail you receive. Registration is free of charge.