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Shoppers get ID theft safety message

PUBLISHED: 19:02 21 November 2008 | UPDATED: 21:51 05 July 2010

CONTINUING to crack down on crime, a vital safety message is today going out to shoppers in Lowestoft and those who shop from the comfort of their own home.

CONTINUING to crack down on crime, a vital safety message is today going out to shoppers in Lowestoft and those who shop from the comfort of their own home.

With more and more people hitting the streets in the run-up to Christmas, the importance of identity theft and plastic card fraud takes on extra significance.

Teaming up with the Waveney Community Safety Partnership, The Journal is calling on shoppers to follow a number of important steps in the build-up to the festive season.

“One of the big issues at the moment is identity theft and in particular plastic card fraud,” partnership co-ordinator Alan Osborne said. “A great deal of this type of crime can be prevented with a few simple steps when out shopping.”

These are:

Don't let cards out of your sight when using them in shops, restaurants and bars.

If possible shield the key pad when entering your PIN.

Keep your PIN secret, don't write it down and keep it with your card.

Always check your bank and credit card statements carefully and report any unusual transactions to your bank or card issuer immediately.

Shred documents that contain personal or financial information.

With the growth of the internet, many people now do their shopping online and users should be equally wary of disclosing certain information.

“It is just as important to be aware of fraud whilst shopping online,” Mr Osborne said.

These are:

Make sure you install and keep up to date anti virus software on your computer.

Shop on secure websites only. These will have a padlock or unbroken key symbol in your browser window.

Use sites that you know you can trust - well known retailers and so forth.

Never respond to requests from unknown e-mails or phone calls asking for your PIN, login details or passwords. Banks would never ask you to disclose these details.

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