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Identity Theft

By understanding exactly what identity theft is, how it happens, and how it affects you, you will be better able to prevent and, if necessary, resolve identity theft.

In general, identity theft is more extensive than fraud, which is usually limited to an isolated attempt to steal money from an existing account. Fraud and identity theft can be easily confused so we recommend that you review not only this page, but also Fake Emails and Web Sites and Fraudulent Pop-up Windows, so you can confirm that you are addressing the appropriate issue.

What is identity theft?

Identity theft occurs when someone illegally obtains your personal information – such as your Social Security number, bank account number, or other identification – and uses it repeatedly to open new accounts or initiate transactions in your name. For example, someone might do a combination of the following: open new credit cards, open new bank accounts, forge checks, and even apply for loans using your name and personal information. This can cause financial loss and damage your credit, which can lead to a lengthy resolution process.

How can I help protect myself?

  • Do not open or respond to online solicitations for personal information. Cumberland Federal Bank will never send email containing attachments, or require customers to send personal information via email or pop-up windows.
  • Carry only necessary identification. In particular, do not carry your Social Security card.
  • When a Social Security number is requested to sign up for a service, confirm that it is actually needed rather than some other identifier.
  • Make photocopies of all the information you carry daily and store it in a secure location like a safety deposit box.
  • Shred financial or personal documents before discarding. Most fraud and identity theft incidences happen as a result of mail and garbage theft.
  • Always put outgoing mail in a U.S. Postal Service mailbox, which is more secure than your home mailbox.
  • Collect your mail promptly each day.
  • Use passwords on all accounts and your PC that are difficult to guess – and don’t use the same password for everything. Don’t use passwords that relate to family names, birthdates, your SSN, addresses, or your job.
  • Do not keep passwords on you, and don’t write such information on debit or ATM cards.
  • Don’t give private information to anyone unless you are positive who the person is and they have a legitimate need to know.
  • Never lend your password to anyone – you will probably be responsible for everything that results.
  • Do not give out personal data over the phone, through the mail, or on the Internet unless you have initiated the contact.
  • Periodically check your credit report to see if there are loans or credit cards outstanding that you don’t know about.
  • Do not allow your credit card out of your sight when paying for products or services.

Sources for Assistance

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the Federal government’s primary agency for dealing with identity theft matters. They operate a hotline devoted only to identity theft. The toll-free number is 1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338). FTC Website is



Equifax, a national reseller of

consumer credit information

announced Thursday, September 7th,

that the company suffered a cybersecurity

incident potentially impacting 143 million

US customers.  For additional information

and to see if you were impacted by this

incident, click on the following link:

Equifax Notice


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