Learn How Banks Track Suspicious Activity

Published on Feb 21, 2014 06:00 am

We trust our banks to keep a watchful eye out for suspicious activity. That involves trust. It’s either that or we can choose to tuck all our money away in a sock beneath our bed—hopefully safely. But taking that route, for the vast majority of Americans, isn’t an option.

Banks do tend protect the nation’s assets with vigilance, and they put a great deal of effort into preventing and catching suspicious banking behavior that can indicate identity theft on a person’s account.

The following behaviors are signs that could raise the red flag for banks:

  • Suspicious, frequent transactions. Banks keep a close eye out for transactions that are made in frequent, short periods of time, especially if there are large deposits and withdrawals made in cash or by check. Banks can rationalize the transactions by customers’ occupations and patterns of conducting business.
  • Numerous transactions that are made in different branches on the same day—for the same account. If these transactions are below an established bank threshold, it could mean the transactions were made to go undetected.
  • Activities that deviate from a person’s normal banking habits.  Your bank likely has a policy in place to contact you if they detect any suspicious activity on your account. They may even choose to freeze or cancel your debit or credit card as a result. If you become a victim of identity theft or fraud, there are steps that you can take to “right” the wrong and get back on the path of recovery.

It’s not the bank’s responsibility to monitor each transaction to determine if it’s an instance of identity theft. You are the only one who can truly track each purchase and deposit to confirm it’s authorized – and if it’s not, it could be a sign of identity theft.

As a consumer, it’s up to you to regularly check your bank statements & monitor your credit reports for signs of identity theft. Furthermore, early detection of suspicious activity may help you to recover more quickly if there’s an indication of fraud on your credit report.

This article is provided for general guidance and information. It is not intended as, nor should it be construed to be, legal, financial or other professional advice. Please consult with your attorney or financial advisor to discuss any legal or financial issues involved with credit decisions.

Published by permission from ConsumerInfo.com, Inc., an Experian company.   © 2014 ConsumerInfo.com, Inc.  All rights reserved.

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