Identity Theft: What Can You Do?


The Sault Ste. Marie Police Service is pleased to participate in Crime Prevention Week in Ontario.

The Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police, as well as the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, believes that crime can be reduced by working with our citizens to make our communities safer places to live.

Between November 2nd and 8th the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service will provide daily crime prevention information to our citizens.

Identity Theft

Some signs that your identity might have been stolen:

-Bills and statements don’t arrive when they are supposed to — they may have been stolen from the mailbox or someone has changed the mailing address
-You receive calls from collection agencies or creditors for an account you don’t have or that is up-to-date. Someone may have opened a new account in your name, or added charges to an account without your knowledge or permission
-Financial account statements show withdrawals or transfers you didn’t make

Tips to reduce risk of Identity Theft:

-Before you reveal any personal identifying information, find out how it will be used and if it will be shared

-Pay attention to your billing cycles. Follow up with creditors if your bills don’t arrive on time

-Put passwords on your credit card, bank and phone accounts. Avoid using easily available information like your birth date or your phone number

-Minimize the identification information and number of cards you carry

-Do not give out personal information on the phone, through the mail or over the internet unless you have initiated the contact or know who you’re dealing with

-Keep items with personal information in a safe place. An identity thief will pick through your garbage or recycling bins. Be sure to tear or shred receipts, copies of credit applications, insurance forms, physician statements and credit offers you get in the mail

-Don’t carry your SIN card; leave it in a secure place

What to do:

-Call your financial institutions and the police
-Put a fraud alert on your credit report
-Contact Canada Post if your mail is missing
-Keep records of steps taken to clear your name and re-establish your credit