Planning a family reunion or tropical getaway?
These simple tips from Apple Bank’s Fraud Team and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service will help you protect yourself from mailbox fraud and travel-related scams, ensuring a relaxing vacation."
These simple tips from Apple Bank’s Fraud Team and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service will help you protect yourself from mailbox fraud and travel-related scams, ensuring a relaxing vacation.
Steps to Take Before Vacation
- Research your rental before you pay
- Check the website for real customer reviews with details to ensure you know what you are paying for.
- Use your credit cards
- If the resort or rental property you paid for is non-existent, you can recover your money by disputing the credit card transaction with your financial institution. Never use Venmo®, cash or a debit card.
- Notify your bank
- Informing banks where and when you travel helps them identify suspicious transactions and ensures you have access to your money when you need it.
Steps to Take While You Travel
- Check accounts regularly
- The sooner you spot fraudulent behavior and take action, the sooner you can protect yourself and start the recovery process.
- Be mindful of what you share on social media
- Posting current updates that place you far away could leave your home vulnerable to thieves.
- Clear out your mailbox
- A pile of mail is a sign no one is home, and can leave you vulnerable to identity theft. Keep your mailbox empty by:
- Having someone you trust to collect your mail and packages, keeping them safely out of sight.
- Utilizing the USPS Hold Mail® service to keep your mail at your local post office until you return.
Steps to Take if You Are a Victim of a Financial Scam
You should always be vigilant for any suspicious activity in your bank accounts, even, and especially when on vacation. If you do fall victim, follow these steps as soon as possible to avoid further damage.
- If you are a victim of a financial scam, file a complaint with local law enforcement, by visiting the Federal Trade Commission.
- If you are a victim of identity theft, call CustomerLine immediately at 914-902-2775.
- If you suspect you are a victim of mail fraud, report your losses to Postal Inspectors by calling 877-876-2455 or visit www.uspis.gov.
Get more tips by watching our “Elder Abuse & Travel Vulnerabilities: Fraudsters Never Take a Vacation” webinar, held in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and Brooklyn Public Library.
Read the seminar transcript here.