Thursday, May 23 2013 9:00 AM EDT2013-05-23 13:00:09 GMT
ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that metro Albany's unemployment rate declined to 8.6 percent in April, down three-tenths of a percentage point from 8.9 percent in March. TheMore >>
The unemployment rate in the Southwest Georgia region declined to 8.2 percent in April, down two-tenths of a percentage point from 8.4 percent in March. The rate was 8.8 percent in April a year ago.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:30 AM EDT2013-05-23 11:30:38 GMT
Dougherty County Police believe a pair of convenience store smash and grabs may be the work of the same two men. The first smash and grab happened around 2:20 am at the Pit Stop convenience store atMore >>
Dougherty County Police believe two men are behind a smash and grab and a break in at two convenience stores within four miles of each other.More >>
Wednesday, May 22 2013 11:26 PM EDT2013-05-23 03:26:38 GMT
If you're traveling this Memorial Day Weekend, you may notice you're paying about the same at the pump as last year. AAA says the average gas price in Georgia right now is about $3.46 a gallon. That'sMore >>
If you're traveling this Memorial Day Weekend, you may notice you're paying about the same at the pump as last year.More >>
Wednesday, May 22 2013 11:20 PM EDT2013-05-23 03:20:46 GMT
Looks like will have great weather for Memorial Day weekend and DNR Rangers are preparing for big crowds on Lake Blackshear. Rangers expect a large number of boaters all weekend. They say they will strictlyMore >>
Looks like will have great weather for Memorial Day weekend and DNR Rangers are preparing for big crowds on Lake Blackshear.More >>
Wednesday, May 22 2013 11:14 PM EDT2013-05-23 03:14:04 GMT
A Cordele woman and her father are leading an effort to send clothes and other supplies to tornado victims in Moore, Oklahoma. Not only are a lot of people already donating items, but people are chippingMore >>
A Cordele woman and her father are leading an effort to send clothes and other supplies to tornado victims in Moore, Oklahoma.More >>
May 2, 2001
It's happened in Albany, it's happened in Sylvester, it's happened in Ashburn, it's even happened many times in the tiny town of Arlington. "It could happen to anybody, could happen to me, could happen to you," Credit Educator Nita Gaines says.
It's called I.D. theft, and it's costing Americans a whole lot of money-- two billion dollars a year.
"Whenever I go out and talk to people there's always somebody who says, let me tell you what happened to me," Gaines says.
One person who's heard of a lot of people losing their life savings is the Better Business Bureau's Stacy Horne. "Most recent one we had was an elderly woman got credit card threw the whole thing in garbage and he went out and charged all kinds of merchandise," Horne says.
Getting a hold of your credit card is one way a thieve can get your money, but as experts say they require a lot less than that. Just a credit card number, found on a receipt in the trash or given out over the internet or phone can mean financial disaster. And as Horne tells us the same goes for checks and checking accounts.
"People don't realize that just by giving your checking account over the phone I can take whatever out I want," she says.
For many it's convenience at a cost. "When you put money in a checking account it's available to you by writing a check, ATM at an instant," banker Luke Flatt says.
But just as quickly, someone can get your money with the right pieces of information. One of the things Georgia's Governor Roy Barnes is most concerned with protecting is your social security number. That's why the DMV no longer encourages keeping it the same as your license number and the General Assembly tightened the reins on state offices releasing the information. But the responsibility of protecting yourself really falls on you.
"There's a way to safeguard that info and still have the convenience of having credit, debit, ATM, just a matter of using good common sense." Flatt says. And taking some simple precautions.
-Don't give out personal information over the phone, or internet unless you know who you're dealing with and where they're located.
-Tear up or shred any personal information before tossing it out.
-Never keep your ATM passcode in your wallet.
-And most importantly always check your bank statements and credit reports to make sure everything adds up.
You can check your credit by calling the three major credit unions, Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union.
If you find you have been a victim of Identity theft there are ways to recapture much of what you've lost. You should contact the fraud departments of those three credit bureaus. Contact your bank and creditors to get the accounts closed as quickly as possible.
And finally, contact your local police department. Under new law it's a federal felony offense that can carry up to thirty years in prison.