Vail Daily letter: Crooks work holidays |

Vail Daily letter: Crooks work holidays

The holiday season has come quickly upon us. Turkey, Christmas lights, caroling … and white collar crime?

Crime never takes a vacation as you already know and that’s the case with economic and high tech crime, as well. Criminals are working on holidays and tax-season scams even as you’re reading this.

Parents might be buying counterfeit and possibly unsafe gifts for their children. Mortgage schemes are targeting homeowners fearful that they’re about to suffer foreclosure. Heartless criminals are preying on senior citizens with pleas to help the less fortunate or get-rich-quick schemes.

While we all want to be embraced by the spirit of the season, we must be on our guard to avoid becoming a target of scams, or fraud-identify theft. Here are some common sense tips for not becoming a victim:

Check your credit report yearly.

Always check your checking and savings accounts and credit card statements regularly. Notify your bank and credit card company immediately about any unauthorized transactions.

Never throw away credit card or bank statements in usable form.

Be aware of missed bills which could indicate your account has been taken over.

Never give your credit card number over the phone unless you make the call.

Make sure your checking account has funds available when writing checks so you don’t become criminally liable.

Ensure websites are secure prior to submitting your credit card number.

Beware of providing credit card information when requested through unsolicited emails.

If the opportunity appears too good to be true, it probably is.

Do not reply to e-mails asking for personal banking information.

Report any computer related frauds or scams to your local authorities and

Additionally, has a list of the 12 most common scams computer users should be aware of during the holiday season.

Have a good and safe holiday season.

Joe Hoy Eagle County sheriff

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