We recently told you about scammers tricking consumers into sharing sensitive information by telling them a federal stimulus plan will pay their power bill for a month; they just need your SSN and bank routing number. If you think that no one would fall for such an obvious ruse, then you might be surprised to know that not only were thousands of people in New Jersey taken in by the scam, but they passed it along to their friends because they thought it was a good deal . . .
The basic rule is this: Whenever anyone contacts YOU, NEVER give them any information (account numbers, your birthday, or social security numbers, etc.) that they could use to steal your identity. No reputable business calls you and asks for this info, or sends you an email asking for it. Only share such sensitive information over the phone (if ever) when you call a business that you have found in a reputable public directory.