Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Public Safety Alert, Residential Theft of mail, Identity Theft/Fraud and crime-prevention tips

Public Safety Alert, Residential Theft of mail, Identity Theft/Fraud and crime-prevention tips

Tuesday, January 31, 2017 - 1:47 PM
43 Division:  416-808-4300

Officers from 42 Division would like to advise the public of some recent thefts-of-mail occurrences in the area of Kennedy Road and Finch Avenue East, from mailboxes at residences. 42 Division would like to provide these tips to improve security and keep your family’s mail and personal information safe and secure:

What is Identity Theft?Identity theft refers to the preparatory stage of acquiring and collecting someone else's personal information for criminal purposes. It is illegal to possess another person's identity information for criminal purposes.

What is Identity Fraud?Identity fraud is the actual deceptive use of the identity information of another person (living or dead) in connection with various frauds (including, for example, personating another person and the misuse of debit card or credit card data).

Identity theft techniques can range from unsophisticated, such as dumpster-diving and mail theft, to more elaborate schemes.

Information soughtIdentity thieves are looking for the following information:
- full name
- date of birth
- Social Insurance Numbers
- full address
- mother's maiden name
- username and password for online services
- driver's licence number
- personal identification numbers (PIN)
- credit card information (numbers, expiry dates and the last three digits printed on the signature panel) 
- bank account numbers
- signature
- passport number

What your information could be used forCriminals can use your stolen or reproduced personal or financial information to:
- access your bank accounts
- open new bank accounts
- transfer bank balances
- apply for loans, credit cards and other goods and services
- make purchases
- hide their criminal activities
- obtain passports or receive government benefits

Safety measures and tips for home owners - collect your mail daily
- if you’ll be away, use the Hold Mail service to suspend delivery, until you return, with Canada Post
- if your mail fails to arrive, contact senders to ensure they have your correct mailing address. Report any concerns to Canada Post Customer Service
- shred documents that contain personal financial information, such as statements and credit card offers
- keep your mailbox secure by locking it, even when in your residence 
- activate your home security system, activate your security alarm with perimeter setting
- activate CCTV cameras when away from residence
- these theft-of-mail occurrences have occurred during the mid-afternoon hours, after mail has been delivered to houses, so please be extra vigilant 
- if you are aware of a suspicious vehicle or person in your area, call police

Using these tips may help keep you and your property safe and secure. 
Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-4200, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at www.222tips.com, or text TOR and your message to CRIMES (274637). Download the free Crime Stoppers Mobile App on iTunes, Google Play or Blackberry App World.

Please download the Toronto Police Service Mobile App for iOS or Android.

For more news, visit TPSnews.ca.

Constable Caroline de Kloet, Corporate Communications, for Detective Sergeant Gerry Heaney, 42 Division

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