By Faye Gaston
The senior citizens at the Nutrition Center in Union Springs were taught about the serious crime of someone stealing and using personal information in fraud and scams.
This can “wreck havoc with your finances, credit history, and reputation.
It can take time, money and patience to resolve.”
Cynthia T. White, Regional Extension Agent, presented information on June 6, 2018 by power point.
She gave each person a booklet of 60 pages prepared by the Federal Trade Commission that gave detailed instructions on how to repair damage that identity theft can cause and how to “reduce the rick of identity theft happening to you.”
The presentation included how thieves get personal information and how they use it to “drain your bank account, run up charges on your credit cards, open new utility accounts, or get medical treatment on your health insurance.
“A thief may even file a tax return in your name and get your refund, and might even give your your name to the police during an arrest.”
She explained how to recognize evidence that your information was stolen, and also what to do if your wallet, Social Security card, checks or other personal, financial or account information is lost.
She told the immediate steps to take in reporting that your identity was stolen.
Reporting is to be made to various places including a police report.
Subjects were addressed such as bankruptcy filed in your name, contacts from debt collectors, and fraudulent student loans.
She told how to correct errors in your medical records and how to clear your name of criminal charges when a thief used your name.
Instructions were given on how to protect your personal information in twenty-one ways, including in the use of a computer.
The booklet included sample letters and forms and contact phone numbers and web sites to assist with solving problems created by thieves who commit fraud and scams.