The central bank, in an advisory on Friday, reminded the public on how to protect themselves against identity theft.
“Identity theft or stealing of personal information to commit fraud is a crime that may seriously undermine a person’s finances, credit history and reputation,” the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said in a statement.
If a person thinks that his/her personal information has been compromised, the BSP advises the public to change their passwords, security questions relating to their personal information, automated teller machine, and online access.
The BSP stressed that if the personal information of a financial consumer has been used without consent, the victim should immediately contact his/her creditors starting with the creditor where the fraudulent transaction took place; financial institution where the accounts subject to identity theft are established, and when the victim discovers that an account has been created under his/her name without his/her knowledge.
“The victim should likewise file a complaint before the PNP [Philippine National Police] Anti-Cybercrime Group or the NBI [National Bureau of Investigation] Cybercrime Division and keep a copy of the police report. Said report may be needed for the investigation of identity theft,” it said.
The BSP also reminded the financial consumers to cooperate with their banks when the latter ask for additional information to improve the security of their accounts, and to actively safeguard personal information to protect themselves from identity theft.
“Increasing public awareness on frauds such as identity theft is an essential component of the BSP’s financial consumer protection agenda. A well-informed citizenry is essential to maintaining financial stability, which is a key policy objective of the BSP,” it said.