January 16, 2013 — Coral Gables, FL —
Last week, you were notified about phishing attacks geared specifically toward the University of Miami’s faculty, students, and staff. If you were the recipient of such email(s), and inadvertently provided any sensitive or private information, e.g., Social Security Number, etc., you may be a victim of identity theft. Each year nearly 12 million people are affected by identity theft, including children. If someone stole your identity, act fast to help reduce the damage this can cause.
If you have questions or are having trouble, please don’t hesitate to contact the UMIT Help Desk:
For updates and more information on this issue, visit: http://www.miami.edu/it
Please review the information below for a list of action steps to protect yourself from identity theft.
What are “phishing” emails?
The most common form of phishing is emails pretending to be from a legitimate retailer, bank, organization, or government agency. The sender asks to “confirm” your personal information for some made-up reason: your account is about to be closed, an order for something has been placed in your name, or your information has been lost because of a computer problem. Another tactic phishers use is to say they’re from the fraud departments of well-known companies and ask to verify your information because they suspect you may be a victim of identity theft. In one case, a phisher claimed to be from a state lottery commission and requested people’s banking information to deposit their “winnings” in their accounts.
What to do if you are a victim of identity theft:
Carefully review all financial statements to identify any anomalies (e.g., bank statements, credit card statements, etc.). If you identify any fraudulent activity, immediately contact the respective
financial institution to file a report.
Place a fraud alert with one of the three major credit bureaus (the company you contact must tell the other two), and then order your credit report from each. Identity theft victims can get the reports
for free. The contact information for these bureaus is as follows:
o Equifax: http://www.equifax.com or (888) 766-0008
o Experian: http://www.experian.com or (888) 397-3742
o TransUnion: http://www.transunion.com or (800) 680-7289
Submit a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by calling: (877) 438-4338 or visiting: ftc.gov/complaint
For issues related to your Social Security Number (SSN):
o Call the Social Security Fraud Hotline at: (800) 269-0271
o Report the incident online at:
File a report with your local law enforcement agency. Attach your FTC Identity Theft Affidavit to your police report.
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