Posted in Security, Financial Tips
We all receive them: prescreened offers and unsolicited phone calls. If you have recently applied for credit, you may have noticed an increase in these communications as well. The good news is that there are steps you can take to reduce calls, texts, and mailed or emailed offers, though it may take time to go into effect.
According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)*, you receive these offers as a result of information in your credit report, which can be received upon request from the credit bureaus by certain companies. If you intend to apply for a loan or credit account, or if you want to opt out of future prescreened offers, the FTC suggests the following:
- You can opt-out for five years or permanently at optoutprescreen.com or call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688). To complete the request, you will be asked for your name, address, Social Security number, and date of birth. The information you give is confidential and will be used only to process your request to opt out. Opt-out requests are processed within five days, but may take several weeks before you stop receiving offers.
- The National Do Not Call Registry was created to stop unwanted sales calls. You can register your home or cell phone number by visiting donotcall.gov or by calling 1-888-382-1222 from the phone you want to register. It may take up to 31 days for sales calls to stop.
- You can limit the type of mail you receive at DMAchoice.org. This is the Direct Marketing Association's consumer website, where you can opt-out or opt-in to catalogs, magazine offers, and other direct marketing communications. There is a $2 processing fee, and registration is valid for ten years. DMA Choice also provides an email opt-out option.
If you have already applied for credit, you can still choose to opt-out of any offers, however, it may take time to go into effect since some companies may have received your information before your opt-out was processed.
It is important to note that taking the steps above may only limit the offers from legitimate companies. Scammers will always utilize various ways to obtain your financial or personal information along with your money. Always be on guard.
If you recently secured a loan or credit account from Bank First, you may receive offers from other credit or insurance companies that have obtained information from the credit bureaus. Please keep in mind that Bank First never sells or distributes our customers' private or personal information. Some information is public knowledge, regardless of which lender you use.
Never provide your personal information to someone you don’t know by mail, email, online, or over the phone. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the legitimacy of anything you receive in the mail, email, or by phone that appears to be from or sent on behalf of Bank First, please contact your local Bank First office.