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Whether you prefer to visit your local branch or do your banking online, identity fraud is something that can happen to anyone.

Luckily, there are a number of simple precautions you can take to help keep your personal details safe and protect yourself against identity theft.

What is identity theft?

Identity theft can range from someone using your personal information to apply for loans and credit cards, to having your entire identity assumed by another person. In extreme cases the fraudsters may conduct business in your name without your consent.

Suspect someone has stolen your personal details?

Contact us immediately on 133 282 so we can secure your accounts and assist you further. Any instance of identity theft should also be reported to your local police.

Signs that someone might be using your identity illegally:

  • A bank or financial institution contacts you about a loan or credit card application that you did not apply for.
  • You receive an email or phone call stating you’ve been denied credit that you did not apply for.
  • You receive mobile phone, bank, or credit card statements in your name, but you don't use that particular bank or service.
  • You notice your mail is missing or has been stolen.
  • You have not received your regular bank or credit card statement (and haven’t switched to digital statements).

Five simple steps to help protect yourself from identity theft

1. Shred your statements and personal documents before throwing them away

If a document contains financial information or personal details such as your name, address, date of birth, or credit card numbers, shred or destroy the document before throwing it in the bin.

2. Keep your personal documents in a safe place

Personal documents that are kept on file should be locked away or hidden in a safe place. If you live in a share-house, consider locking your personal documents in a security drawer or cupboard to prevent your personal information falling into the wrong hands.

3. Lock your letterbox

Keep your letterbox secure to avoid your personal mail being stolen. This is one of the most common ways thieves gain access to the personal details of their victims.

If your mail is stolen, report this to Great Southern Bank and any other financial institution you use so a warning can be placed on your account and help prevent someone using your information illegally.

4. Go paperless

Get your Great Southern Bank statements sent to you by email. You'll help protect the environment and your personal details.

You can request digital statements quickly and easily in online banking.

5. Act quickly

If you suspect you’ve had personal information stolen, or have become a victim of identity theft, contact us on 133 282 so we can assist you as soon as possible. We recommend contacting all of the financial institutions you bank with, so they are aware of the situation.

Any instance of identity theft should also be immediately reported to your local police.

To help prevent further instances of identity fraud, consider obtaining a credit history report so you can check for unauthorised activity on your own file.

More tips on security and protecting yourself from fraud.