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      November 16, 2018

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Identity Theft in Montana

Montana MapMontana residents are taking steps to protect themselves from identity theft. Identity Theft Protection services are available to Montanans and offer constant monitoring of personal information (e.g. social security numbers, credit card and bank account numbers and other details) so that any unauthorized activity is detected and addressed in a matter of minutes. This prevents criminals from abusing stolen information for long periods of time, which would do significant damage to Montanans credit histories and good reputations.

Many residents of the state are also making wise choices to secure their personal information, thus preventing identity theft in their homes and workplaces. As many identity thieves prefer to steal social security numbers, it is important to keep that information well-protected by not disclosing it unless absolutely necessary, and in those cases verifying why the person or business requesting it needs it, how it will be used, and how it will be kept private; and by leaving social security cards and other documents bearing the SSN in a safe place at home rather than carrying them in wallets and purses.

Online behaviors are equally important, such as keeping passwords private and making them difficult to guess (e.g. combinations of letters and numbers rather than words found in the dictionary or family birth dates), looking for the "lock" icon in browser status bars to ensure that any data transmitted is encrypted, and not disclosing personal information via email or on websites.

Unfortunately, for the more than 400 Montana residents who reported being victims of identity theft to the Federal Trade Commission in a recent year, the effects of such crime can be devastating; it can take months - or even years - to repair credit histories, recover funds stolen from bank accounts, and even fight false charges and imprisonment for actions taken by identity thieves. It is well worth the time, effort, and cost - if one chooses to use Identity Theft Protection services - to avoid becoming a victim.


Sugar Shack owner reports credit card thefts

Ohlrich could go to prison if convicted of three counts of felony identity theft in connection with thefts reported this summer by Sugar Shack owner Dana Montana. Montana, who also owns the Dancing Ho...

Published:  Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:49:00 GMT

Beware of scams targeting veterans and military members

The Montana Office of Consumer Protection is warning that some ... "We find that military members or veterans become victims of identity theft most commonly through the Veterans Affairs scam," Meyer s...

Published:  Thu, 15 Nov 2018 08:45:00 GMT

Fraud Watch: Scams target vets, service members

HELENA - The Montana Office of Consumer Protection ... "We find that military members or veterans become victims of identity theft most commonly through the Veterans Affairs scam," Meyer ...

Published:  Thu, 15 Nov 2018 09:19:00 GMT

Saratoga crime blotter for the week of Nov. 23

Identity Theft: Between Jan. 1, 2017 and Oct. 24 ... A follow-up investigation revealed the same suspect also spray-painted street signs in the area of Pierce and Mt. Eden roads. The suspect was arres...

Published:  Thu, 15 Nov 2018 06:55:00 GMT

Parents charged with using kids' identity to rack up debt

BATH, N.Y. (AP) - A couple has been charged with identity theft after the man's son applied for a college loan and discovered his credit rating had been ruined by unpaid utility bills and credit card ...

Published:  Thu, 15 Nov 2018 09:19:00 GMT

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