HNB Fraud Watch Protection

What you can do to lower debit card risk

  • Always know your PIN (Personal Identification Number).  Due to the increase in debit card fraud, banks will block certain areas where fraud is prevalent.  Only a transactions with a PIN and card present will be processed when a block is placed.  If you cannot remember your PIN, please call HNB at 800-462-9515, and ask for a PIN mailer to be mailed to you.
  • Use a credit card for internet transactions.  You have greater legal protection if goods are defective or don’t arrive.
  • Use internet and/or mobile banking to monitor your account on a regular basis, instead of waiting for a monthly paper statement.  If you see fraudulent transactions contact HNB immediately.
  • Don’t use your debit card for info-mercial purchases.  If you have a dispute over double-billing or products that do not arrive from an info-merchant, only credit card companies can facilitate consumer disputes.
  • If you cannot use a credit card in place of your debit card when shopping online, check with your bank to see if prepaid cards are available to you.
  • Many businesses still print credit and debit card receipts with your entire account number on them.  Check your receipts when you make purchases to ensure the full number is not included.  If it is, use the pen you are signing with to black out all but the first or last four numbers of your account number.

Fraudulent Debit Card Transactions

April 15, 2014 – In response to reports of fraudulent debit card transactions, HNB has taken steps to protect our customers and provide them access to their funds at ATMs and retail locations.  Criminals have unlocked yet another new way to steal, making both bank customers and banks victims of unauthorized transactions.  This time all banks with offices in Honesdale and some customers of these banks are the victims.Although a very small number of debit cards were affected, all of our customers are important to us.  HNB has been aggressive in tackling this problem, allocating bank resources and contacting law enforcement authorities.  The banks, too, are victims of this new wave of unauthorized transactions.  HNB has a commitment to zero loss should customers be victimized, and any customers identified as victims have been made whole by HNB.  This exceeds federal requirements (Regulation E) for customer protection from financial loss.Be assured, that these unauthorized transactions were NOT the result of how the customers processed their transactions or any unauthorized release of personal information by the banks.  While this is not unique to HNB and has occurred at Financial Institutions across the country, we truly regret the inconvenience this has caused our customers.  They have been very supportive and understanding and have expressed their appreciation for our enlisting early detection services.  We will continue to monitor our customers’ card use and work with the authorities to make it very difficult for thieves to hit our customers again.

As a security precaution, we reissued more than 1,300 new cards although the affected number of cards was much less.  HNB, Visa, and our third-party transaction validation service, continue to work as a team to protect customers from debit card unauthorized transactions.  This new type of debit card fraud has occurred at many banks across the country.  It has nothing to do with how customers used their card.  Bank account and personal information was not comprised in this scheme.  Criminals use sophisticated software to gather working numbers for the purpose of making unauthorized fraudulent purchases.

Customers are an excellent early warning system to identify possible unauthorized transactions.  Vigilance of their card use and purchases are an important part of detecting and preventing further theft.  Here are some tips for debit card holders to use:
• Know your account balance and track it carefully.
• Make sure to keep sales receipts and deposit slips.
• Use a check register.
• Review your monthly statements carefully and monitor your accounts using the web.
• Put your shopping sites (retail or Internet) on notice that you expect them to protect your financial information.
• Alert HNB immediately if you are suspicious of unauthorized transactions or should your card be lost or stolen. Simply call or visit a convenient branch office.
• Make sure your PIN is unique and change it often.
• Memorize your PIN, and don’t write it down.

HeartBleed Bug

The Honesdale National Bank is committed to robust network, Internet Banking, and web site security.  As you may have heard, a serious vulnerability was announced that is being referred to as the “HeartBleed Bug”.  If exploited, this vulnerability could allow an attacker access to sensitive information.  More information regarding this vulnerability can be found here

Please be aware that we at The Honesdale National Bank take precautions daily to ensure our customer information is secure.  We have been in contact with our providers to ensure the proper safeguards are in place.

Our online banking service uses different encryption technology than that affected by the “HeartBleed Bug”. Based on the site analysis we have conducted, it is NOT necessary to change your HNB Internet Banking Password.  If you use the same password for your online banking at HNB as you use for other online sites that may have been vulnerable, we recommend that you change your HNB online banking password.

As a precaution, we recommend that you:

  • Follow up with other online sites where you use passwords to determine if they were subject to the “HeartBleed Bug”, when they applied the appropriate patches to correct the vulnerability, and when  you should change your password with them
  • Use complex passwords at least eight characters in length that include letters, numbers, and symbols
  • Don’t use personal information as a user name or password such as birth dates, phone or SSN numbers
  • Keep your computers and mobile devices updated with the latest anti-virus and anti-malware software
  • Change your passwords regularly and use different passwords on each online site

Visit our consumer alerts page for information on fraud, scams, hoaxes, how to protect your identity, and a link to get your free annual credit report. Thank you for taking precautions in safeguarding your online access.

Target Card Breach

We have been notified that there was a large scale breach at Target regarding cards used in-store and swiped from 11/27/13 through 12/18/13.  These cards may have been compromised.  This does not apply to online purchases.  HNB cards used at Target stores during the timeframe in question will be replaced with a new card.  A mailer containing the PIN for the new card will follow.  Once activated, the old cards will be closed.  If you have any questions, please contact your local branch office or call our Electronic Banking Department at 570-253-3355 (toll free 800-HNB-9515).  For additional fraud information, please read the tips below to better protect yourself.

Tips to Avoid Fraud

1. Keep track of the balances on any account that has a plastic payment card. Monitoring any drastic changes is the best warning system.  Sign up for balance alerts through HNB Netteller Online Banking and GoDough Mobile Banking for your HNB accounts.

2. If you receive a call from a bank employee, realize that is okay to hang up and call the bank to find out if the call was legitmate. Do not call a number provided by an unknown person, call the number us at 570-253-3355 or 800-462-9515.

3. Do not use an ATM unless you have some privacy around you, people should not be lingering around and don’t converse with others while you are using the ATM. If any parts of the ATM are loose or unstable, or the ATM looks drastically different than you last saw it, do not use it, instead go to one you feel more comfortable using or visit us inside the branch to withdraw money.

4. Report any incidents that could put your card information at risk.  If an ATM captures your card, do not assume that it is by fault of the ATM, a criminal may have staged this and will retrieve your card later.  In either situation, you should notify the bank and request a new card as soon as possible.

5. If for any reason you feel that your card information may have been compromised by a merchant, ATM or any business, notify the bank and ask for a new card number. You can also report your card lost or stolen through HNB NetTeller Online Banking.  Also, remember to change your PIN often.

Summer Scam

The summer heat wave is blasting people across the country, but don’t let your fried brain trick you into believing a new scam spreading across the country. For example, Dayton Power & Light in Ohio says customers have been calling in to report a trickster who’s telling people President Obama will pay their utility bills as part of a bailout plan. The scammers are asking people to register for the program, and provide personal and financial information in the process. The whole thing is a sham, says DP&L, according to the Dayton Daily News. Other reports of such scams have been popping up elsewhere, including New Jersey, California, Wisconsin, Florida and many other states.

“The scammers are simply fishing for personal information as part of the identity theft fraud. Unfortunately, many victims received forwarded emails or text messages from friends and family,” said DP&L spokeswoman Lesley Sprigg. “The scam uses email, Twitter, phone calls and even door-to-door visits. Sometimes, utility customers are asked to provide the number on the back of their Social Security cards. It is a way to get Social Security numbers, bank account or routing numbers to use in identity theft.”

The scammer is assuring targets that the bills will be paid off, and have even been providing a bogus confirmation numbers. Victims are realizing soon enough that no, the bill has not been paid, and yes, they still must pay it. And in the process, scammers are stealing money from victims’ bank accounts using the personal information.

As always, never give out personal information like a Social Security Number or bank account numbers over the phone from anyone who calls you. DP&L says anyone getting a call from someone claiming to be part of the program or claiming to be from DP&L should hang up and call the utility’s customer service number at 800-433-8500. If you’re in another state, make sure to contact your utility company as well.

Don’t fall for ‘Obama will pay electric bill scam,’ warns DP&L [Dayton Daily News]

Thousands of Americans fall victim to utility payment scam [Associated Press]

 Fraudulant Check Scams

We have received phone calls from supposed winners of the North-American Sweepstakes Lottery to verify the authenticity of checks drawn on Honesdale National Bank that they have received.

These checks are fraudulent and we advise you not to deposit or attempt to cash them. They will be returned by HNB to the bank that attempts to collect on them.

Callers may contact Kevin Colgan at (570) 253-3362, ext. 1497.
Recipients can fax a copy to us at (570) 251-9519.