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Protect Your Identity

Identity theft occurs when someone acquires your personal information and uses it without your knowledge to commit fraud or theft. It is a serious crime and cases are growing. An all-too-common example is when an identity thief uses your personal information to open a credit card account in your name.

No matter how cautious you are, there is no way to completely prevent identity theft from occurring. But there are ways you can help minimize your risk. It’s always smart to stay informed on the latest tips and solutions. This page contains valuable information on how you can protect yourself by managing your personal information wisely, the warning signs of identity theft, and what to do if you do become a victim.

Helpful Tips

  • Keep your computer up-to-date with the latest software installations, browser updates, and firewalls. This ensures you’re working with the most modern security features and aren’t leaving your information vulnerable to an attack.
  • Password protect both your phone and computer in case you lose either or an unauthorized person tries to access your device.
  • Don't give your social security number or other personal credit information on the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you've initiated the contact or are sure you know whom you're dealing with.
  • Don't carry your Social Security card with you; leave it in a secure place. Carry only the identification and credit and debit cards that you need.
  • Don't put your address, phone number, or driver’s license number on credit card sales receipts.
  • Social Security numbers or phone numbers should not be put on your checks.
  • Shred your credit card receipts, copies of credit applications, insurance forms, physician statements, checks and bank statements, expired credit cards that you're discarding, and credit offers you get in the mail.
  • Don’t share your personal information with anyone including usernames, passwords, and account numbers.
  • Secure your credit card, bank, and phone accounts with passwords. Avoid using easily available information like birth date, the last four digits of your SSN, or your phone number. When opening new accounts, you may find that many businesses still have a line on their applications for your mother's maiden name. Use a password instead.
  • Secure personal information in your home, particularly if you have roommates or hire outside help.
  • Promptly remove mail from your mailbox. If you're planning to be away from home and can't pick up your mail, call the U.S. Postal Service at 1-800-275-8777 to request a vacation hold.
  • Avoid using public WiFi when using online banking and logout every time you exit the site. Only connect to your account over a secure network to avoid mobile hackers.
  • If an email seems suspicious, don’t click on any attachments or links and simply delete it or report it to your email provider.
  • If the email says it’s from the Bank and concerns you, immediately contact your banker and do not reply or click on anything.
  • Ask about information security procedures in your workplace. Find out who has access to your personal information and verify that records are kept in a secure location. Ask about the disposal procedures for those records as well.
  • Before revealing any personally identifying information (for example, on an application), find out how it will be used and secured, and whether it will be shared with others. Ask if you have a choice about the use of your information. Can you choose to have it kept confidential?
  • Only keep essential credit and debit cards and IDs in your wallet and never write your PIN number down.
  • If you receive an email offer that seems too good to be true, it probably is. Be wary of any stranger contacting you about money or prizes to claim. This is almost always a scam.
  • Only download the Bank’s mobile banking app from the official app store. Don’t download any other apps that claim to be for banking but aren’t legitimate.
  • Phishing (pronounced “fishing”) is a scam to send emails that appear to be from a real source, but are actually fishing for personal information. These false emails can be disguised as coming from the Bank, the IRS, or any retailer. If you suspect an email is phishing for your information, delete it and notify your banker as soon as possible.
  • Always know Itasca Bank & Trust Co. will never ask you over the phone or by email for confidential information such as your Social Security number, user ID, password, or PIN number.

If you become a victim of fraud or you suspect fraud, contact:

  • The fraud departments of the three major credit bureaus
  • The creditors of any accounts that have been misused
  • Your local police to file a report
  • Itasca Bank & Trust Co. and any other banks with whom you have accounts, to cancel existing accounts held in your name and re-open new accounts with new passwords. Itasca Bank & Trust Co. is committed to safeguarding our customers’ financial information. Maintaining our customers’ trust and confidence is a top priority. To learn more about how we protect your information, please view our Privacy Notice.

Check your credit report

Order a copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit-reporting agencies every year. Make sure it is accurate and includes only those activities you have authorized. By checking your report on a regular basis you can catch mistakes and fraud before they wreak havoc on your personal finances. Don't underestimate the importance of this step.

Credit Bureau Contacts:

Equifax -
To order your report, call: 1-800-685-1111
To report fraud, call: 1-800-525-6285

Experian -
To order your credit report or report fraud, call: 1-888-EXPERIAN (397-3742)

TransUnion -
To order your report, call: 800-916-8800
To report fraud, call: 1-800-680-7289

Federal Trade Commission

For comprehensive information on general consumer interests, policies, issues and consumer protection, visit the website of the Federal Trade Commission at

Free Credit Report link

Obtain a copy of your credit report.

FDIC Consumer News


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