The following article appeared on the Delta Community Credit Union blog Nov. 9. Delta Community Credit Union Georgia’s largest credit union with 24 branches across metro Atlanta and three outside Georgia.
With the holidays in full swing, you may be planning on traveling to see family and friends. In between booking your flights and shopping for the perfect gifts, make sure you protect yourself from fraud and identity theft. A few simple security measures will give you peace of mind this holiday season.
Before leaving, notify your financial institution of your travel plans. To thwart criminals, your bank or credit union might block your card if it detects spending outside of your normal behavior, like new charges in a different state or country.
Next, clean out your wallet. Remove cards that you don’t regularly use and avoid carrying your Social Security card, birth certificate or passport (except when necessary). Once you’ve secured your wallet, it’s time to secure your mobile and electronic devices. Make sure your phone, tablet and laptop have strong passwords. The best passwords incorporate a combination of lower and uppercase letters, numbers and special characters. You may also consider enabling a locator app on your phone so if it is lost or stolen, you can easily locate it and block it from use.
While you’re traveling, check ATMs for skimming devices before use. A skimming device is a small card reader that fits over the existing card reader and has the ability to save a user’s card number and PIN. As a Delta Community member, you have access to thousands of surcharge-free ATMs around the world, which we recommend using. As an added safety measure, use your hand to cover the ATM keypad when entering your PIN, and regularly review all transactions using your Mobile Banking App.
When you return home from your trip, review your bank and credit card statements and check for any unknown charges. If you do spot anything suspicious, contact your financial institution immediately to report the fraud. Delta Community members can contact our Member Care Team any time via our toll-free number at 800-544-3328 or locally at 404-715-4725.
We hope these tips come in handy this holiday season.