OKLAHOMA (OBV) – The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission (OESC) is honoring Fraud Awareness Week by spotlighting the methods they use to protect the identities of members of Oklahoma’s workforce.
Fraud Awareness Week began Sunday and continues through Saturday.
“We’re proud to serve Oklahomans with the national standard of fraud prevention through aggressive, yet creative, techniques while ensuring equitable access to the programs we administer,” said Christopher O’Brien, director of UI compliance at OESC. “We encourage everyone to stay aware of the dangers of identity fraud, and to maintain safe practices in the digital world.”
OESC employs numerous fraud prevention and detection techniques and implementation strategies, has the nation’s lowest false positive identification rate and allows for an array of identity verification options.
Other states have adopted several of Oklahoma’s fraud prevention techniques and strategies, which have been championed by the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA), according to OESC officials.
Oklahoma’s customized digital identity verification system, VerifyOK, helps secure the identity of members of Oklahoma’s workforce.
The U.S. Postal Service assists the OESC with its fraud prevention efforts by providing 283 locations across Oklahoma where OESC claimants can verify their identity, in addition to the usual verification options online, at an OESC office or through live virtual ID proofing sessions.
OESC’s fraud prevention efforts also include working closely with federal law enforcement personnel, including the FBI, the CIA, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Attorney’s Office and numerous other agencies to investigate and prosecute fraudsters in criminal and civil fraud cases.
“Online passwords and log-ins are highly sought after by bad actors participating in identity theft,” O’Brien said. “While protection of Social Security numbers and other identification methods is necessary, minimizing your digital footprint through limiting password sharing and duplication is critical to help secure personal information and reduce the likelihood of fraud.”
- Data breaches: Identity thieves might gain access to a company’s database that stores sensitive employee information. If you don’t adequately protect this information, it can get stolen and used for fraudulent purposes.
- Insider access: Sometimes, employees with authorized access to sensitive personal information may abuse their privileges and use that information for fraud, including creating fake identities for employment.
- Phishing: Identity thieves can use phishing emails, phone calls, or other scamming tactics to try and trick you into providing your personal information. These thieves might pose as potential employers or human resource representatives and then request sensitive info to misuse.
- Document theft: If your identifying documents, such as a driver’s license, birth certificate, or Social Security card are lost or stolen, a bad actor can use them to establish false identities and gain employment.
- Fraudulent applications: Identity thieves may submit job applications using your identity, fabricating some personal information to make it appear legitimate.
Norton provided the following tips for preventing identity fraud:
- Keep your personal information a secret: The best way to stop thieves is to keep your personal identifying information confidential. Store your Social Security card in a secure location, and use a VPN whenever you share personal information on public Wi-Fi.
- Watch out for phishing scams: Thieves may try to steal your information by tricking you with an email or a text that seems like it’s coming from a trusted contact. Watch for spelling and grammar mistakes that might clue you into the scam.
- Limit personal information on any work computers: Any data you store on a work computer is not private. Limit what you share on work and public computers to avoid bad actors finding sensitive information.
- Use a VPN on public networks to protect yourself: Use a virtual private network (VPN) to encrypt any data you send or receive on a public Wi-Fi network. VPNs also mask your IP address to make retrieval of your personal information even more difficult.
Click here to report a fraudulent employee claim to OESC.