LACONIA — The weeks leading up to the April 15th tax deadline are often vulnerable ones for consumers as W-2s and tax returns containing their personal information circulate over the internet and through the mail.
According to a Javelin Strategy and Research study, 12.7 million Americans were victims of identity fraud in 2014. Though down from 2013, it remains the Federal Trade Commission's number-one consumer complaint.
"Identity thieves look for every opportunity to steal your information, especially during tax season," said Vickie Routhier, SVP – Chief Retail Banking & Marketing Officer for Bank of New Hampshire. "Consumers should be on high alert and take every step to protect their personal and financial information."
To help consumers, Bank of New Hampshire offers the following tips:
- Don't share your secrets.
Don't provide your Social Security number or bank account information with anyone who contacts you online or over the phone. Neither your bank nor the IRS will contact you requesting this information.
Beware of phishing emails.
Phishing attacks occur when criminals use 'spoofed' emails and fake websites of trusted organizations to coerce consumers into sharing personal information. During tax season, fraudsters often pose as the IRS. Don't be fooled. The IRS will never initiate taxpayer contact via unsolicited email to request personal or financial data.
- Shred sensitive papers.
Shred receipts, banks statements and unused credit card offers before throwing them away. For papers you must keep, like tax documents, keep them in a secure place. Bank of New Hampshire is offering several free mobile shredding days at select locations during April; visit www.banknh.com/shred to learn how you can shred old and confidential documents safely.
- Keep an eye out for missing mail.
Fraudsters look for monthly credit card statements, W-2s, tax refunds or other mail containing your financial information. If you don't receive your W-2s, and your employer indicates they've been mailed, or it looks like it has been previously opened upon delivery, contact the IRS immediately.
- Protect your computer.
Make sure the virus protection software on your computer is active and up-to-date, particularly if you plan to file your taxes online. When conducting business online, make sure your browser's padlock or key icon is active. Also look for an "s" after the "http" to be sure the website is secure (https).
- Use online banking to protect yourself.
Monitor your financial accounts regularly for fraudulent transactions. Sign up for text or email alerts from your bank for certain types of transactions, such as online purchases or transactions of more than $300.
Report any suspected fraud to your bank immediately. Additionally, if the IRS denies your tax return because one has previously been filed under your name, alert the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 1-800-908-4490.
Bank of New Hampshire, founded in 1831, provides deposit, lending and wealth management products and services to families and businesses throughout New Hampshire. With 21 banking offices throughout New Hampshire and assets exceeding $1 billion, Bank of New Hampshire is the oldest and largest independent bank in the state. Bank of New Hampshire is a mutual organization, focused on the success of the bank's customers, communities and employees, rather than stockholders. For more information, call 1-800-832-0912 or visit www.BankNH.com.
Last Updated on Monday, 30 March 2015 04:45
MEREDITH — Financial expert and author, David Kutcher is pleased to announce the release of his new book, Kutcherisms. The self-titled compilation of short stories and articles is an easy and informative read, taking people through several life journeys while offering insight and advice on retirement in today's economy.
Kutcher, who has worked in the retirement planning industry for almost three decades has seen the ebb and flow of the markets, the changing needs of pre-retirees and the evolution of the current economy. He is a well known speaker and is always able to deliver a plethora of information in a concise and interesting manner. Not coming from the corporate world, David Kutcher is certainly not your mother's financial advisor. He's a "tell it like it is" United States Marine Corps veteran and his book is indicative of his personality and style.
Kutcher has taken his stints as a Fox Business News Contributor and a local columnist to the next level with the release of his book. We're confident that this book gives the public some insights into the workings of this thriving small business as well as some excellent life lessons and planning tools.
Kutcherisms can be purchased at several local retailers or online at www.dakfinancialgroup.com.
Last Updated on Monday, 30 March 2015 04:38
TILTON — At Franklin Savings Bank's annual meeting, Jeffery Savage, President & CEO, led an evening of recognition of Corporators and employees. The Bank and Franklin Bancorp, MHC, its mutual holding company, welcomed three newly–elected Corporators and celebrated 160 combined years of employee commitment and service. The newly-elected Corporators were: Peter G. Doane, MD, family physician with Newfound Family Practice in Bristol; Kevin H. Irish, Chief Information Officer with LRGHealthcare in Laconia; and Joseph G. Colby II, owner of Colby Lumber Company in Boscawen (not pictured). These local
professionals will add well to the overall community perspective that the bank's Corporators represent.
In making the announcement, Savage stated, "We are very pleased to have Peter, Kevin and Joseph joining us as Corporators. With their enthusiastic focus on families and businesses in our communities, our common values bring a synergy that will make them great FSB ambassadors."
Also celebrated at the Greenside Restaurant event were Franklin Savings Bank employees being recognized for their periods of service: 35 Years: Carol Laro – VP, Human Resources Officer; 25 Years: Connie Deuso – Personal Banker; Melissa Mansfield – VP, Retail Lending, Loan Operations & CRA Officer; Monique Abear – Newfound Market Regional Manager; Virginia Little – Loan Systems Specialist; 10 Years: Aimee Messer – Assistant Branch Manager; 5 Years: Nancy Watson – Branch Manager; Anna Offen – Assistant Branch Manager; Sue Kibby – Credit Assistant.
Franklin Savings Bank, a community savings bank, has provided loan, deposit and investment services to businesses and families since 1869. The Bank has offices in Franklin, Bristol, Boscawen, Tilton, Laconia and Gilford with all deposits insured up to the allowable limits by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Additionally, FSB offers commercial loans from its Bedford Lending Office and provides investment, insurance, and financial planning services through Independence Financial Advisors, its wholly-owned subsidiary headquartered in the Bank's Main Office. Franklin Savings Bank can be reached at (603) 934-4445, toll free at (800) 372-4445, online at www.fsbnh.com, or on Facebook at facebook.com/franklinsavingsbank.
Last Updated on Monday, 23 March 2015 07:28
BRISTOL — Mid-State Health Center is now providing dental services in its Bristol office at 100 Robie Road. The dental services are offered in addition to the medical, behavioral health and laboratory services offered at the facility which opened last summer. The dental program is led by Mid-State's Dental Director, Dr. Kelly Perry. She along with her team of two dental hygienists and two dental assistants are ready to accept new patients of all ages.
The Mid-State Dental Program focuses on improved access to dental care in the region. Although many people have an established relationship with a dentist, there are many community members who do not have a dentist. Mid-State's dental program offers high- quality preventive and restorative dental services in a comfortable environment. Mid-State sees all patients regardless of their ability to pay whether they are an existing Mid-State patient or not and accepts most dental
insurances including Medicaid and Medicare (limited). For those who are uninsured and qualify based on income, Mid-State also provides a sliding-fee-scale discount.
Sharon Beaty, Mid-State's CEO shared, "the addition of dental services to Bristol supports Mid-State's goal to treat the whole person in a personalized patient experience where care is coordinated among all the patient's providers."
The launch of dental services in the Bristol location was made possible through the commitment and collaboration of many supporters. Supporters include the US Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resource Service Administration; Dr. David Bogacz, DMD; the New Hampshire Department of Health, Division of Public Health Services, Oral Health Program; Bi-State Primary Care Association; and Speare Memorial Hospital.
Mid-State is accepting new medical and dental patients of all ages and encourages anyone interested in learning more about Mid-State's clinical team and its services to visit www.midstatehealth.org or by calling 603-536-4000 (Plymouth) or 603-744-6200 (Bristol).
Last Updated on Monday, 23 March 2015 07:20
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