ID Thieves Target Social Security Debit Cards

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The impact felt from debit card fraud can have a domino effect. When thieves drain your bank account, they may leave you without enough funds to meet your monthly obligations on time and that can trigger a negative chain reaction.

If you fall late on your credit card payments, mortgage payments, and even your cell phone, utility and auto loan payments -your credit score will take a negative blow.  And as your credit score takes a dive, soon your interest rates and insurance premiums will rise, and so too will your monthly payments.
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Today's criminals are up to more than just credit card fraud. They are concentrating their efforts on much more intrusive crimes such as; cleaning out your checking, savings and money market accounts, accessing home equity loans, filing fraudulent tax refunds, applying for government Unemployment Medicare, and Medicaid benefits and even hijacking Social Security payments. 

In an effort to reduce theft and offer greater convenience, the government has been replacing monthly Social Security checks with electronic payments. One form of electronic payment is via a debit card account. Trouble is --as Buffalo, NY Grandmother Diane Griffin recently discovered, thieves have quickly figured out how to steal the benefits card, bypass any PIN, and clean out an account within minutes --and without difficulty. 

Griffin says this case of identity theft has turned her life upside down. She's still struggling to get by and recover the stolen funds.  Diane reported the crime to postal inspectors, the bank that issues the debit cards --and sought help through the Social Security Administration. When she was unable to find effective help, she turned to her local news station. Watch the below video from WIVB for more of Diane's story.  This earlier blog offers tips to help protect against debit card fraud

Knowledge is often our best defense against crime.  Take time to learn how to recognize the new face of identity theft and assess your risk of today's more sophisticated and intrusive crimes.


Identity theft empties woman's pockets:

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1 Comment

Someone spent all of my social security deposit from this new debit card I was forced to take (instead of the paper checks) before I even knew a deposit was made. The card has never left my possession and no one else has access to it. Now I have to go through so much hassle, time, and paperwork to try and get the money back. HOW IS THIS SAFE AND CONVENIENT???

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