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Reporting Fraud Or Forgery Crimes

Fraud crimes can cost victims time and money, and damage a reputation that has taken years to establish. You can take steps to protect yourself from fraud and identity theft. Check your credit reports on a regular basis. The three main consumer reporting agencies (Equifax, Trans Union, and Experian), are required by federal law to give you one free report each year. The report can be obtained at www.annualcreditreport.com. Keep your confidential information private. Financial institutions and credit card companies will not ask for your account information over the telephone or email. Stop receiving banking and credit card statements in the mail. Memorize your PIN and don’t keep it in your wallet. If you conduct business online, use your own computer that has up to date anti-virus, anti-spyware, and firewall protection. Don’t store financial information on your cell phone. Don’t open email from strangers. Don’t click on pop-ups. Don’t provide your credit card number online unless you are making a purchase from a Web site you trust. Consider turning off your computer when you’re not using it. Shred old financial statements and credit card receipts.

If you believe you are a victim of fraud, you must first report the crime to the appropriate financial institution. Your financial institution will request that you complete an affidavit of forgery. Essentially, an affidavit of forgery is a declaration that you did not authorize or receive any benefit from the transactions making up your claim. An affidavit is made voluntarily for the purpose of establishing the fact that your signature was a forgery. Once the affidavit is completed, you will need to bring a copy of it to the police department and review the incident with an officer. An officer will not be able to give you a case number unless they have this affidavit of forgery and your current contact information.

 
 
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