Guard yourself against Identity Theft
One of the nation’s fastest growing forms of crime, the Federal Trade Commission estimates that as many as 9 million Americans have their identities stolen each year. If you were to suffer identity theft, you could suffer lost time, money, credit and your good name.
While there is no fool-proof way to avoid ID theft, the Maryland Supplemental Retirement Plans (MSRP) wants you to know ways you could minimize your chance of becoming a victim.
How thieves steal identities
- Phishing ("fishing") – They send spam or pop-up messages to get you to reveal your personal information
- Dumpster diving – They rummage through trash looking for personal information
- Skimming – They use a special storage device when processing your debit or credit card
- Changing your address – They divert billing statements to another location by completing a change of address form
- Old-fashioned stealing – They steal wallets, purses and mail
How to minimize your chance of being victimized
- Immediately check into inaccurate information on invoices or statements
- Shred all documents that show personal, financial and medical information
- Do not respond to email, text and phone messages that ask for personal information
- Look for misspelled words – they're often obvious in fake email messages and disguised websites
- Watch for "https" at the beginning of the web address when you conduct transactions online; the "s" means "secure"
- Encrypt messages when you use a public wireless network
- Create passwords that mix letters, numbers and special characters
- Use and keep current the anti-virus and anti-spyware software, and firewall on your computer
- "Trust your gut." If it doesn't feel right, it may not be right
How MSRP protects your ID
Team MSRP is highly trained to protect participant identities. We’re constantly working behind the scenes to help ensure our computer systems and processes remain highly secure and protected from outside predators.
No Team MSRP member will ask you for personal information by unsolicited email, text or phone messages. For your protection, Team MSRP members will verify each person’s identity before we release any account information or conduct any transaction at your direction.
MSRP recordkeeping and transactional services are provided by Nationwide® Retirement Solutions, an affiliate of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, which has been recognized five times over the past decade for its commitment to customer privacy.1 From encryption software and firewalls, to passwords and safety certification with usernames, to ongoing training of their employees, Nationwide’s commitment to privacy extends well beyond the e-world. Nationwide is part of the TRUSTe Privacy Program, an organization that works to ensure that personal information is protected by its members2.
If you have questions about any communication you receive from MSRP or as you conduct any business on our website, please do not hesitate to contact us. Our Team MSRP office in Hunt Valley is available during normal business hours by calling toll-free at 1-800-966-6355. Or call our Customer Service Center any weekday during our extended hours—8 a.m. to 11 p.m.—at 1-800-545-4730.
1. "Ponemon Survey Names Twenty Most Trusted Companies for Privacy", Media Release, February 26, 2010.
2. "Nationwide Insurance named a top company for privacy", Media Release, March 4, 2010.