Information on Identity Theft and victim action steps may be obtained from our law enforcement partner, Michigan State Police at:
http://www.michigan.gov/msp/0,4643,7-123-72297_41992_72431-128823--,00.html. This site will provide tips, resources and forms.
A downloadable PDF pamphlet is available at:
Tips for Preventing ID Theft:
- Never give out identifying information in response to unsolicited offers by phone, mail, internet, or in person unless you initiate the contact.
- Order and review your credit report yearly.
- Review financial and credit card statements monthly for unauthorized activity.
- Cross shred paperwork containing personal identifiers (i.e. receipts, insurance forms, bank & credit card statements, cash advance checks) before discarding.
- Protect your mail by removing it from your mailbox as soon as possible. Place your mail delivery on hold at the post office while you’re away on vacation.
- Be aware of where your personal identification is kept and who has access to it – at work and at home.
- Protect your wallet/purse and don’t leave them unattended. Limit the number of credit cards carried, and don’t carry your PIN or social security card in your wallet/purse.
- Treat checkbooks, ATM cards, credit cards & credit card offers as if they were cash. Cancel unneeded credit cards.
- Don’t put your social security number (SS#), phone number or date of birth on your checks.
- When using the internet to make purchases, look for the “s” in the address (https) to ensure a secure site.
THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY OFFERS THE FOLLOWING SAFETY TIPS:
If possible, avoid studying alone. Always let someone know where you are and an approximate time when you will be finished.
- Keep your purse in a locked cabinet or locker. Never place your valuables in a highly visible area.
- Keep your personal belongings in view at all times. Never leave them, even for a moment, to use the restroom or get a drink.
- Never prop open doors, especially fire doors.
If you observe an individual in the improperly designated restroom, leave immediately.
- If you observe a suspicious person, report it to the Department of Public Safety.
- Always walk with another person. Never walk alone to your car at night. If a classmate is not available, call the Department of Public Safety and request an escort.
- Learn the locations of the blue light emergency telephones on campus.
- Walk on designated walkways that are well lit. Report poor lighting to the Department of Public Safety. Avoid shortcuts through the park, vacant lots, and other deserted places.
- Know the location of the Department of Public Safety and other safe areas.
- If you suspect that you are being followed, turn or cross the street. If you are being followed, use a blue light emergency phone or campus phone to call the Department of Public Safety. Find a safe area to proceed to, such as an office, highly visible area, or a place where there are people who can see you.
- Do not leave valuables, like your wallet, purse, or radar detector, in open view. Conceal or leave the items in a safe place, such as in a locker or trunk of your car.
- Do not give your keys away. Keys can be duplicated. Always keep your keys in your possession.
- Engrave valuables with your name and/or driver's license number. University property should have serial numbers recorded and possess a university inventory tag.
- Require photo identification from maintenance and utility workers prior to allowing them access to your house or office. Verify that the workers have authorization to remove items from the office or your home.
- Report all thefts immediately.
- Keep police and fire emergency numbers near your phone.
- Do not let a stranger into your house, even if the stranger states that it is an emergency. Instead, offer to make a call for help.
- Be alert and aware of your surroundings when walking outdoors.
- Purses should be carried close to the body and secured under one arm, not swung from the strap.
- Do not walk, jog, or run alone, especially after dark.
- Do not hitchhike.
- Leave a light on at home when you are away. An inexpensive timer on several lights could discourage a break-in.
- Make arrangements with your neighbors or other neighboring office staff when you will be away from your home or office. Ask them to keep an eye on the place. Arrange for someone to retrieve your mail and discontinue newspaper delivery until you return.
- Transfer telephone calls to a neighbor or friend.
Walk with confidence. Show that you are aware and in control. Body language works!