Know the Difference: Theft vs. Fraud
Identity Theft: Identity theft is when a person takes over your personal and/or financial information to obtain credit or open bank accounts fraudulently. Personal information used to obtain credit or bank accounts usually include name, social security number, date of birth and address. This is generally not caught immediately. This is usually discovered when reviewing credit history or when new credit is applied for. If not handled properly and quickly, this could affect your credit report and credit score.
Credit & Debit Fraud: Credit & debit card fraud is usually limited attempts to steal funds from an existing bank account through a credit or debit card transaction. This is often the result of a stolen wallet, electronic crime or data breach. This usually does not affect your credit report or credit score if reported in a timely manner.
As a FAIRWINDS member, protecting your information, finances and investments is our first priority. We will never ask you to login to your account through an embedded link within an email or text message. We will never ask for confidential information (like your debit or credit card number, PIN or SSN) via email, text message, phone or direct mail.
If you believe you received a fraudulent message asking for your personal information, do not provide any of your confidential information.
What to do if you've had credit/debit card fraud
- Notify FAIRWINDS immediately at 1.800.443.6887 to report credit/debit card fraud or to dispute a transaction. We'll guide you through the process.
What to do if your identity has been stolen
- Notify and file a report with local law enforcement immediately.
- Contact social security fraud hotline at 800.269-0271.
- Inform all financial institutions that you conduct business with so your accounts can be flagged to warn you of unusual or suspicious activity.
- Visit a FAIRWINDS branch and complete the Identity Theft Affidavit packet.
- Contact the three main credit bureaus to place an identity theft alert on your credit report. This will tell financial institutions and lenders to proceed with caution before a new credit account is opened under your social security number.
Equifax Fraud Unit: 800.525.6285
Experian Fraud Unit: 888.397.3742
TransUnion Fraud Unit: 877.IDTHEFT