|Sidebar: Prepare Yourself for Y2K |
Sidebar: Prepare Yourself for Y2K
Washington D.C. -- December 13, 1999 (Army News Service) -- If you are prepared for the worst that winter brings, you are ready for any contingency involving Y2K, a Pentagon official said.
"In the unlikely [event] that something happens, people should realize that it will be very local and very temporary," said Miriam Browning, the Army's director of Information Management. "They should probably treat it like a major winter storm."
Year 2000 is more than the rollover of the next millennium. For criminals, it has also become an opportunity to push new crimes, Browning said.
"People need to be especially aware of Y2K scams," she said. "We are seeing more and more of them as we get closer to Dec. 31. Do not give out your Social Security number or your bank account number or any personal type of number to someone on the phone who you don't know, and who may be requesting this information from -- this may be bogus. Financial institutions already have this information; they wouldn't be calling you for it."
Most financial institutions are sending out Y2K advisories to their customers to safeguard their accounts against such fraud. According to one such warning, officials warned customers to:
As a manner of good preparation for the unexpected, Y2K planners suggest people maintain the following:
- Hard paper copies of important records such as checkbook balances, financial statements (including credit cards, tax records, investment information, billing statements and leave and earning statements) and medical records;
- Enough cash, food (preferably non-perishable), water and other supplies that can sustain your household during a three- or five-day winter storm;
- Blankets, sleeping bags and an alternate source of non-electric heat -- wood for fireplaces, fuel for kerosene heaters;
- Battery-powered radio, flashlight and extra batteries, a manual can opener, and a first aid kit;
- Extra prescription medicine (extra month's supply) for infants, the elderly or anyone with special needs;
- Ensure that fuel levels are full in personal vehicles;
- Confirm travel plans made prior to Jan. 1 and again after New Years.