Scammers are impersonating federal agencies such as the IRS; they’re often pretending to be from the Social Security Administration and Medicare. When will they start targeting TSP account holders? Identity theft and phishing are threats to all of us. It’s not just bank accounts and credit cards that are at risk, our TSP could be vulnerable as well.
Our TSP account may be our largest financial asset. For some of us, it’s even worth more than our principal residence. We can’t be too careful in protecting our Thrift Savings Plan account.
Here are some things that you should know when it comes to protecting your TSP account.
The Thrift Savings Plan will only contact you by email for two reasons; and in these emails they will never ask you for any personal information. The reasons they would contact you are: 1) To confirm an account transaction that you initiated on the TSP website (and then, only if you provided them with your email when making the transaction). 2) To verify that you have provided your email address in the “My Account” section; this particular email is informational in nature.
The TSP will never contact you about any investment opportunities. Neither will they authorize or endorse third parties to provide and counseling or investment related services. Though there are many reputable firms that do provide such services, the TSP does not endorse any of them. Always do your “due diligence” when choosing an adviser, or other party, to work with.
If someone refers to themselves as a “TSP Advisor” or “TSP Counselor” all that means is that is what they have chosen to call themselves. There are no such designations approved by the Thrift Savings Plan. Having said that, there are many financial advisors who are knowledgeable in the ways of the TSP; if you’re considering using one, make sure you’ve checked them out.
On their website, the TSP makes suggestions about account security.
First, do not share your TSP account number, User ID, password or security question answers.
Second, review any correspondence you get from the TSP promptly when you receive it.
Third, log into your TSP account periodically to monitor your account activity.
Fourth, do not use an unsecured network to log into your TSP account.
If you suspect fraudulent activity, or if you want to check on calls or emails that claim to be from the TSP, contact the TSP via the Thriftline (1-877-968-3778) or by the secure message center on the TSP website.