Financial Crimes

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Tis the season to be merry and to be careful. Unfortunately, not everyone is full of good will during the holidays.

This time of year is a prime time for financial crimes and officials warn you to protect yourself from cyber grinches, scams and schemes this Christmas.

Officials say seniors are often the target because they're generally more accessible by telephone and mail, are trusting and willing to listen and have limited experience with investments.

BBB officials advise you to:

-never give out your credit card numbers, social security number or driver's license number over the phone, even if you're told it's only for "identification" or "verification" purposes

-use direct deposit because if personal information is left in an unlocked mailbox, you may be at risk for theft

-when in doubt always check things out, talk with trusted family members, friends or neighbors before making a major purchasing decision, so you have a safe and enjoyable holiday

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