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Identity Theft

Identity thieves use a variety of methods to misrepresent who they are, exploit your trust and persuade you to reveal confidential information. One of their newest scams involves unsolicited telephone and text messages.

Identity Theft

What Is Identity Theft?

Identity thieves acquire key pieces of your confidential information, such as your name, address, date of birth, Social Security number and mother's maiden name in order to commit fraud.

With this information, an identity thief can take over your financial accounts, open new bank accounts, purchase automobiles, apply for loans, credit cards, and Social Security benefits, rent apartments, and establish services with utility and phone companies, all in your name.

Common Methods of Identity Theft

  • Theft of your wallet, purse, or checkbook
  • Removing mail from your mailbox, either incoming or outgoing
  • Going through your trash
  • Phishing—obtaining information by email scams or fraudulent websites
  • Hacking—illegally gaining access to computer systems containing personal or financial data
  • Pretext Calling—using false pretenses to obtain information via telephone

Telephone/Text Scams

Beware Unsolicited Telephone and Text Messages

You may receive a text message or a phone call with a prerecorded message that describes an urgent situation that requires immediate action. The message may say, “Your account has been blocked. Please call 800-123-4567 to unlock it.” However, don’t believe it.

How the Scam Works

Toll-free numbers can be set up quickly, and sometimes they exist solely for the purpose of capturing your confidential information. Often, these phone numbers simply play another prerecorded message that prompts you to enter your 16-digit account number. This is followed by a request for your PIN and other personal information.

Before you realize you’re being scammed, you’ve given criminals enough information to duplicate your card and access your accounts.

What You Should Know

BB&T will never call or text you to ask for your 16-digit account number, credit card number or PIN.

Protect Yourself

Here are some tips for avoiding telephone and text scams:

  • Never respond to phone or text messages alerting you to blocked accounts. The BB&T Alerts service does not send a “blocked account” message.
  • Never disclose personal information such as your account number, user ID or password via text message. Instead, call 888-BBT-ONLINE (888-228-6654) to confirm that BB&T has requested the information.
  • Report suspicious phone or text messages to BB&T as well as your mobile phone service provider.
  • Inform BB&T about any online or mobile banking applications that appear to be malicious.
  • Monitor your financial records and accounts on a regular basis, such as when your monthly statements arrive, so you can spot any suspicious activity as soon as it occurs.
  • Remember that there’s a difference between unsolicited text messages like those used in these scams and legitimate account updates from BB&T. You sign up for BB&T Alerts in advance, by registering for the service.

Get Help

If you have been a victim of identity theft, the following steps will help you protect yourself.

Notify Credit Agencies

Contact any one of the major credit reporting agencies immediately to request that a fraud alert be placed in your file, and that no new credit be granted without your approval.

Once you have called any one of these agencies, you do not need to call the others. They all notify each other when an individual requests a fraud alert.

  • TransUnion 800-680-7289
  • Equifax 800-525-6285
  • Experian 888-397-3742

Notify Creditors, Local Police and Federal Trade Commission (FTC)

Notify any other grantors of credit about the fraud, and file a police report. In addition, consider reporting the fraud to the FTC at 877-438-4338 (TDD: 202-326-2502).

Keep Your Documentation

Keep a detailed record of all events related to your identity theft. This includes details of the scam itself as well as the steps you take in reaction to it.

Include names, telephone numbers, and the date and time you made contact with individuals or companies for assistance.

Keep the originals and make copies of your documents for others.

Get Assistance

By Phone

Call 800-BANK-BBT (800-226-5228).

By Email
Visit a BB&T Financial Center
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