Norwalk, CT (PRWEB) April 6, 2006
As if anyone needed another reason to dread jury duty, a new twist on an old identity theft scam has surfaced within the last year, this one involving jury duty “no-shows,” reports AP9 PrivacyMatters123, a leading security and privacy membership program offered by Adaptive Marketing LLC.
AP9 PrivacyMatters123 notes that identity thieves pretending to be local county clerks are calling various citizens to admonish them for failing to report for jury duty -- even though they were never officially asked to appear for jury duty. The caller then tells these unsuspecting folks that a warrant has been drawn up for their arrest as a result of this “violation.”
Next, the victims are asked for private, identifying information, including their Social Security Number or, occasionally, credit card account numbers, for “verification purposes.” Once the scammers receive this information, they use it to steal the identities of the victims. So far, AP9 PrivacyMatters123 reports, this scam has occurred in at least nine states, including Arizona, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas and the state of Washington.
As a reminder, AP9 PrivacyMatters123 provides the following tips that can help you avoid becoming a victim of identity theft:
-- Never give out personal information on a phone call you didn’t initiate. If you receive an incoming call and the caller is asking you for such information, ask for a callback number before you share any information. If you get a callback number, hang up, and do a little research, like Google the phone number to see if anyone has registered an online complaint about it. Alternatively, you can check the phone book or information for a published number for the organization that the caller claims to represent. Don’t call the number back until you verify that the call is legitimate. This approach also applies to e-mail and regular mail solicitations.
-- Store your personal documents in a secure place (a home safe or a safe deposit box in your bank), and shred any unneeded documents that contain your personal information, e.g., credit card applications, old bank or credit card statements, tax returns over ten years old, and other potentially identifying documents.
-- Report a lost or stolen driver’s license, and contact the U.S. Postal Inspection Service if your mail has been stolen. Your driver’s license contains unique identifying information about you that can be used by thieves to create a new identity. Similarly, thieves can use credit card offers and other direct-mail solicitations to establish new accounts in your name.
-- Don't use family names or birthdays as passwords or PINs. If a thief steals your debit card or your account numbers, family names and birthdays are the first passwords and PINs he or she will try. Also, be sure to guard the keypad when you enter your PIN in a public ATM to keep “shoulder surfers” from stealing the number right out from under you.
-- Monitor your credit card and bank account statements closely. If you find any questionable or unauthorized activity in these accounts, investigate it immediately; it may be a sign of identity theft.
AP9 PrivacyMatters123, a privacy and protection program offered by Adaptive Marketing LLC, can assist you with managing and maintaining your private information. Members can log on to their members-only website at PrivacyMatters.com for unlimited access to their credit reports, a credit monitoring service that alerts them when something changes on their credit profile as well as when any new accounts have been opened under their name, and a slew of other personal safeguards.
About AP9 PrivacyMatters123
AP9 PrivacyMatters123 is a leading security and privacy membership program offered by Adaptive Marketing LLC. Headquartered in Norwalk, Conn., Adaptive Marketing is a category leader in both membership and loyalty programs, bringing value direct to consumers through an array of benefits in healthcare, discounts, security, personal property and personals. Members may access their benefits at PrivacyMatters.com. With broad online and offline distribution capabilities, Adaptive Marketing offers its corporate client partners effective tools to enhance market presence, strengthen customer affinity and generate additional value through programs such as AP9 PrivacyMatters123.
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