Mail theft is on the rise. Fraudsters are targeting blue USPS collection boxes, neighborhood locking boxes, and personal mailboxes. You may be asking, "How are they getting in locked boxes?" The answer is arrow keys.
The Postal Service uses arrow keys as a "master key" to open many types of boxes. These include secure collection boxes, parcel lockers, and neighborhood delivery and collection panels. You can see how this could be enticing to bad actors. Fraudsters are using stolen arrow keys to open multiple boxes at a time. Arrow keys can open entire zip codes of locked mailboxes. Once open, fraudsters can steal checks and personal information, putting folks at risk for fraud.
Did you know? Through a chemical process called "check washing," fraudsters can erase the writing on a check. They can then re-write it to anyone they want, and for any amount, all while keeping your signature and account information.
Ways to Protect Yourself:
One great way to avoid mail fraud is to sign up for E-Statements. You can protect yourself from mail fraud and identity theft by signing up for our secure eStatement options. If you don't already have eStatements, ask an O Bee representative or sign up via Online and mobile banking. It's the best way to make sure your information stays private.
The USPS recommends these options to avoid mail fraud:
- Bring outgoing mail to USPS facilities or use your place of work to send mail
- Check your mailbox daily
- Use Informed Delivery Service provided by USPS
If you think someone has stolen any of your mailed checks or you have been a victim of mail fraud, contact O Bee Credit Union as soon as possible at 360.943.0740. You can also report your stolen mail to USPS by calling 877.876.2455 or visiting www.usps.gov.