What to Do if Your Bank Account is Hacked
Most people have a looming fear in the back of their mind regarding the safety of their bank account. Every year more virus and malware programs are written with the intent of stealing bank and credit card information from honest people.
In this article, I will be focusing on how to regain control of your bank account and get back any money that was stolen from you.
Lost or Stolen Card Numbers
If you notice strange activity on your credit card or in your bank account, notify your bank straight away. It should be noted that you are responsible for your account, not the bank, so make sure to check the account often to ensure everything is in order.
The first thing that will happen is that the bank will put a freeze on your account so that whoever is stealing from you cannot access any more of your money. Federal law protects consumers from any charges made after a card has been reported stolen or lost, so report it as soon as possible.
The bank will then issue you a new temporary card, immediately if you went to your local branch in person, and mail you a replacement permanent card. Most banks will refund you your lost money after you sign some forms saying that you had nothing to do with the theft.
If it was just one card that you lost you could be in the clear, but if your wallet was stolen then you may want to take some additional steps to secure your credit.
If you believe that you are a victim of Identity Theft then you should call TransUnion immediately and alert them of the fraud. They will place an alert on your credit report which is shared by the other credit reporting companies, which will protect you from thieves opening more accounts under your name.
Once you have enacted a fraud alert you can get a free credit report from any of the credit reporting agencies, I suggest doing this and scanning the document for any suspicious activity. Make sure all of the accounts listed are ones that you have opened and authorized.
If your account had in fact been tampered with you should protect yourself against future account fraud. The way to do this is by going to the Federal Trade Commission’s website and get a statement proving that your identity was stolen.
Staying on Top of Your Finances
The best way to prevent further thefts is to always keep track of charges made to your cards. PocketGuard helps you to keep track of where your money is going day-by-day and transaction-by-transaction across all your accounts. This helps you spot unauthorized transactions and take appropriate action.
Even when you are not actively checking your accounts, PocketGuard can automatically track your expenses and send you email alerts when it detects suspicious activity. This helps you feel safe that your accounts are secure.
Featured image credit: FOTER