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News Highlight
Aug 4, 2011 Protect Your Identity Against Internet Fraud
An image of a laptop computer with "Caution" tape on the keyboard is the official benefits website of the U.S. government., and its sister site,, are completely free and confidential and will never ask for any information that could be used to identify you (i.e., name, address, phone number, Social Security number, etc.). If you have been asked to provide personal information or payment to obtain government benefit information from another source, it may be a scam.

Internet scams are as numerous as they are dangerous, and the best way to fight Internet fraud is to learn how to recognize it.

Phishing (pronounced "fishing") is a common type of Internet fraud that uses email and imitation websites that are designed to steal personal data, such as your Social Security number, credit card numbers, passwords or account data.

Follow helpful tips to prevent Internet fraud by the common form of phishing:

1. Do not reply to emails or pop-up messages that ask for personal or financial information.

2. Avoid sending personal or financial information via email.

3. Be cautious of opening unknown attachments or downloading any unknown files from emails you receive, regardless of who sent them.

4. Report the phishing email to

If you believe you are the victim of a scam, you should immediately File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Visit FTC's identity theft website for more information to help you deter, detect and defend against identity theft.

By spotting the warning signs and knowing where to find help, you can protect yourself and your family against Internet fraud.