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Avoiding Mail Theft and Check Fraud


Mail theft and check fraud are causing increased concern for individuals trying to keep their financial information safe.

What is Mail Theft?

Mail theft occurs when mail is stolen from a person’s home mailbox or from other public mailboxes and drop boxes. Mail is a target for thieves because it often includes items thieves can use to try to steal your identity. Bills, statements, checks, and forms with account numbers or other sensitive data printed on them are prime targets for acquiring identity information. Valuable packages, cash, and other documents are also at risk.

To guard against mail theft, it is helpful to sign up for electronic bills and statements. If you do receive paper mail, be diligent about collecting it from your mailbox as soon as possible after it is delivered. Never leave mail in your mailbox overnight. If you will be out of town, you can put a temporary hold on your mail through the United States Postal Service so that your mail will be held at the post office and delivered once you have returned.

What is Check Fraud?

Check fraud occurs when a fraudster uses a person’s name and/or bank account number to create fraudulent checks. Often thieves get this information from checks they have stolen out of the mail.

To help prevent check fraud, reduce the number of checks you write by using your debit or credit card to make purchases and pay your bills electronically either with a credit or debit card or by setting up automatic withdrawals with your billers. If you must write a check that you need to mail, it’s more secure to drop it off inside a post office than to leave it in any mailbox for pickup.

Keep a close eye on your SLFCU accounts by reviewing statements and monitoring your transactions in online banking. If a check you have written does not reach its intended recipient or if you notice a transaction you did not make, call SLFCU at 505.293.0500 or 800.947.5328 as soon as possible.

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