How to protect your money, your identity and your property

Here are some tips from BNZ’s Security and Fraud team to help you make sure your money, identity and property remain protected.

Protect Your Money

Becoming a victim of fraud or theft can be a harrowing experience. Making sure your money remains protected can be as simple as following some basic guidelines:

  • Never use your date of birth as your PIN.
  • Always protect your PIN at keypads - both at ATMs and EFTPOS terminals. Ensure the keypad is protected from view when entering your PIN and be aware of people standing near you who may be watching.
  • Never give your bankcard or PIN to others, whether they are family members, trusted friends, caregivers or strangers. Keep your card in your possession and your PIN a secret.
  • Don’t let your credit card out of your sight when paying for goods or services or at bars or restaurants.
  • Check out this thread for tips from Community members about being vigilant when giving credit card details over the phone.

Remember, your bank will NEVER ask you to reveal your PIN, and you should never give out your credit card number or personal details over the phone unless you have initiated the phone call.

Protect Your Identity

Identity theft occurs when a scammer or fraudster obtains personal information about someone and uses it to assume that person’s identity, often in order to gain money. An awareness of how you access and distribute your personal information can help you avoid becoming a victim of identity theft:

  • Never use public computers or WiFi hotspots/cafes to access your bank accounts or other accounts that hold sensitive information.
  • Shred or burn documents that contain personal information ie. bank statements, credit card statements, invoices.
  • Inspect your bank statements, credit card statements, phone bills and other account information regularly and keep an eye out for anything out of the ordinary.
  • Ensure your mobile phone is PIN or password protected.
  • Check out these tips on spotting a phishing scam.

Protect Your Property

If you’re away from home overnight or longer, ensuring your home is secure and looks ‘lived in’ can act as a deterrent for burglars, and will mean you can rest easy knowing you’ve done all you can to protect your property:

  • If you have a second car that is being left at home, park it in the driveway.
  • Ask your neighbour to clear your letterbox of newspapers and circulars.
  • Leave the curtains open and the blinds up. Even better, ask your neighbour to close them at night and open them in the morning.
  • Turn down the ringer on your telephone to ensure it doesn’t ring unanswered for long periods of time.

The NZ Police also have great tips for protecting your property while you’re away from home - check them out here.