Lesson No. 1: Never give out your Social Security number or other identity information over the phone to someone you don't know.
The Washington State Patrol is warning residents of an identity theft scam that's currently happening in the state by people with an 813 area code from Florida.
The agency has received reports that people posing as officials from the Washington State Police or U.S. Justice Office have called asking residents to return a call and confirm their Social Security number.
Identity thieves often pose as businesses, banks or government representatives, and may sound legitimate or convincing, a State Patrol news release said.
The agency suggests that if someone identifying themselves as a State Patrol employee calls and asks for personal information, call a local State Patrol office to confirm the person calling is with the agency, and find out why they need that information.