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Poisoning Prevention
January 31, 2017


How Does a Little Flame Become so Dangerous?...
December 28, 2016


What Is Identity Theft?...
December 22, 2016


Tis the Season...
December 12, 2016


Smoke Alarm Placement
December 5, 2016


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FINGER LAKES FIRE & CASUALTY
6905 Route 227
P.O. Box 550
Trumansburg, New York 14886


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Articles: ID Theft

What Is Identity Theft?...

December 22, 2016

You've heard the term "Identity Theft" about a thousand times, but do you really know what getting your identity stolen entails?  It's like Catch Me If You Can!  

Identity theft is when criminals steal your personal information, such as your full name or Social Security Number, to commit fraud, including applying for credit, getting medical services, or filing taxes. There are several different types of identity theft, ranging from stealing your health insurance information to creating phony social media accounts using photos and other personal info. But the most common form of identity theft today is tax ID theft.

Finger Lakes offers enhancement endorsements to provide you with the best coverage for ID Theft. Contact your Agent for further details.


Categories: Enhanced Coverages, ID Theft, Scams,

Black Friday Shopping Tips...

November 21, 2016

During Black Friday, consumers will be hitting stores and online retailers to get a head start on buying gifts. Shoppers are naturally on the hunt for deals. However, it's also a great time for scammers and cybercriminals.

Here are five tips to protect your card and prevent fraud this Black Friday:

1. Avoid Deals Too Good to Be True                                                                                                     Although you may be shopping for deals, there are some discounts or promotions that might be a scam in disguise. If you get an email from an unknown sender advertising cheap or free electronics, travel tickets or other merchandise, be on the lookout for signs of a scam.  Schemers may ask you for your personal information or credit card details to get the deal, but avoid clicking on any links that request this information.

2. Use a Credit Card Instead of Debit                                                                                                         While you could choose cash to avoid having your information processed at POS systems, your next best bet is a credit card.  Credit card companies often will not hold you liable for fraudulent purchases.  In the event someone does get a hold of a card without permission, consumers are also liable for less money with a credit card than a debit card.

3. Block Your PIN from View                                                                                                                   Whether you're checking out at a store or withdrawing cash from an ATM, be sure to cover your PIN from view. This is to prevent people from looking over your shoulder or using a hidden camera to record your PIN.

4. Use Only Secured Sites                                                                                                                         Black Friday and its online equivalent Cyber Monday means more shoppers making purchases on the Internet. When shopping, only visit secured sites and look for the little icon of a padlock next to the webpage's URL to indicate that the site is safe to use.

5. Monitor Your Credit Card and Bank Statements                                                                               Cybercriminals might take advantage of the fact that you may be too busy with shopping and visiting family this Black Friday to actively monitor your financial accounts.  While you may be occupied, continue to look at your statements for any suspicious activity.

Finger Lakes offers enhancement endorsements to provide you with the best coverage for ID Theft. For only $25 you can get Identity Fraud coverage added to your policy.  Reach out to one of our Independent Agents for more information.

Let's Not Forget About Thanksgiving Season. Spend the time between now and Thanksgiving focused on gratitude for all we’ve been given.  Our national day of gratitude should be more than just a kickoff to Black Friday Shopping.


Categories: Enhanced Coverages, ID Theft, Scams,

4 Easy Identity Protection Tips

September 12, 2016

1. Don’t give out personal information by phone or email. Financial institutions and government agencies, like the IRS, won’t ask for personal data by phone or email.

2. Use strong passwords. Make them at least eight characters, using at least one number, one letter, one symbol and one uppercase letter.

3. Secure paper documents. Never leave bills with checks inside a mailbox overnight.

4. Add Identity Fraud Endorsement to your policy.  Contact your agent for more details.


Categories: Enhanced Coverages, ID Theft,

The Dangers Of Geotagging

January 8, 2016

Today everyone who uses social media like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram is most likely utilizing this technology in some form – whether they realize it or not.  When the GPS is linked to a phone’s camera, and you take a photo, your phone will tell you exactly where you were and when you took the photo. You can even pull up the photo on a map—down to the exact street.  But, while you are letting friends and families know where you are with your posts, you are also at risk from burglars. They can then watch your postings and activities to find out when you aren’t home and break in.

So what can you do to protect yourself from the dangers of geotagging?

  • Don’t publish photos directly from your phone (use a camera without GPS module)
  • If you plan to publish photos taken with your phone, convert them to PNG file format and publish them from your desktop computer.
  • Watch what you post.  Think twice, about anything you put on the Internet.
  • Disable the function on your iPhone before taking the picture and uploading it to social media.

Categories: ID Theft, Scams,

Identity Thieves are Like 'The Walking Dead'

December 11, 2015

With more than 1 billion records “out there,” it’s just a matter of time before you get ‘got’.

It may be a call from a debt collector, or the flashing lights of a police car as you are pulled over for missing a stop sign, only to find yourself handcuffed because someone stole your identity and used it in the commission of a crime.

What’s coming for 2016 is more of the same. The trend will continue.  There’s unique and more sophisticated technological things we have to worry about.

It’s REAL & it’s EXPENSIVE!

For only $25 you can get Identity Fraud coverage added to your policy.  Reach out to one of our Independent Agents for more information.


Categories: ID Theft,

Holiday Scams...

December 2, 2015

Holidays are the best time for scammers to tug on our heartstrings.

The most likely place you’ll encounter them is when they rattle a collection box in front of you, either as you do your shopping or at your front door.

They may use all kinds of props to fool you, wearing seasonal costumes, dress in familiar uniforms or wearing badges.

If you don’t have time to check out how genuine the collector is, simply don’t give.  If you want to help, find the charity name and donate directly.

Also watch out for telephone solicitations.  NEVER give your credit card number over the phone!

One of the easiest ways to detect a scam is to trust your instincts.  We want you to have a great holiday season and not get taken by holiday scams. So, always be on your guard - and enjoy a Happy Holiday!


Categories: ID Theft, Scams,

Cyber Monday

November 30, 2015

Online shoppers can find great deals on Cyber Monday, but it is also an opportunity for criminals to steal your money or identity.

Avoid fraudulent Sites.  Always look for an "S" in the URL because a website with a URL that starts with "https" indicates a safe and secure site.

Never enter personal information as part of the buying process.  (social security number, date of birth)

Read retailers reviews before ordering.

Avoid using your debit card for online purchases.  Use a credit card, because charges can be disputed if you have been the victim of fraud or identity theft.

Finger Lakes offers enhancement endorsements to provide you with the best coverage for ID Theft. Contact your Agent for further details.


Categories: Enhanced Coverages, ID Theft, Scams,

Black Friday Shopping Tips...

November 24, 2015

Black Friday.  Cyber Monday.  Holiday deals are right around the corner for consumers with a penchant for shopping online with an easy click or swipe.  Here’s a few tips for you to keep in mind.

  • Carry a small purse/bag closely against your body to avoid losing it or having anything stolen.
  • Lock packages in your trunk. Don’t leave packages visible through your car windows.
  • Consider alternate options to pay, such as onetime or multi use disposable credit cards.

… Or for some alternative ways to spend your Black Friday, you can give back by volunteering, eating turkey leftovers, and getting an early start on Christmas movies.  Most of the discounts will still be there when you’re ready to hit the stores.

Finger Lakes offers enhancement endorsements to provide you with the best coverage for ID Theft.  Contact your Agent for further details..

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!  


Categories: Enhanced Coverages, ID Theft, Scams,

5 Ways To Spring Clean Your Identity…

April 9, 2015

Just like your home, your identifying information and accounts can always benefit from a thorough once-over Spring cleaning.

  1. Documents – Now is a good time to destroy or secure old paperwork, especially if your taxes already have been filed. File or shred receipts, bank statements, medical or health insurance statements.  Invest in a quality shredder.
  2. Passwords – Change passwords on your online accounts.  It’s a good idea to do this from time to time to stay one step ahead of hackers and identity thieves.
  3. Technology – Clean all computing devices, including tablets and smartphones, and make sure that any software protections are functioning and up-to-date.  That means installing and updating antivirus and antimalware software and renewing security subscriptions.  Log out of mobile apps for online banking after each use.
  4. Credit –  Order a free copy of your credit report.  And beware of some companies that require a subscription or credit card to do what you’re entitled to do for free.
  5. Protection – Add Identity Fraud protection to your policy and get a FREE RFID blocking wallet!  Contact your Agent for details.

With a little effort now, you can stay on top of your information and safeguard it, letting you spend the rest of your time worrying about how you’re going to relax once warm weather finally arrives.


Categories: Enhanced Coverages, ID Theft,
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