Criminals are conspiring every day to find ways to get your personal or bank information from you. And not just on the Internet, some may even call saying they are with the fraud department of a bank or a credit card company.
PROTECT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
The Honesdale National Bank has security measures to protect your account information, but they can’t be as effective without your help. Many account hijacking attempts begin by criminals hacking into individual user accounts, and from there electronically breaking into the bank using your information and security codes.
Some easily implemented precautions can help you protect your personal information:
Strong Passwords- Experts advise a combination of letters and numbers, and advise against using easily guessed passwords such as birthdays or home addresses.
Anti-Virus Protections- Make sure the anti-virus software on your computer is current and scans your email as it is received.
Email Safety- Email is generally not encrypted so be wary of sending any sensitive information, such as account numbers or other personal information, in this way.
Sign Off and Log Out- Always log off by following HNB’s secured exit procedures.
Don’t Get Phished- Don’t respond to any unusual email requests for personal information. When you opened your bank accounts you already gave it. When in doubt, call HNB.
Monitor Your Accounts- When you check your accounts regularly, you can let your bank know immediately if you encounter anything that does not seem right.
Helpful Hint- Studies show that those who monitor their accounts online often detect fraud earlier than those who rely solely on paper statements.
DON’T LET THEM FOOL YOU.
There are constant reports of customers and non-customers receiving fraudulent Emails or phone calls requesting account and/or debit card information, including PINs, passwords, phone numbers and Email Addresses. NEVER give out your account information, PIN or other personal or financial information in response to an unsolicited e-mail or telephone call.
We will never call or send you an Email asking for your account information. If you get an Email do not click on the link, forward it to us and then delete it. If you receive a call, don’t provide any information, ask for their phone number, hang up and call us. Our local and toll free phone numbers are on your statements and in the phone book.
Help us safeguard your information, because here at The Honesdale National Bank, nothing is more important to us than your security and well being. We’re here to help you, any way we can.
NEVER SEND ACCOUNT INFORMATION AS A RESPONSE TO AN EMAIL
Phishing Scams: Don’t Take the Bait
Internet phishing scams, like other forms of fraud, prey on the unwary.
Phishing con artists claim to be from a reputable company and send out thousands of fake e-mails and fake Web page images in hopes that consumers will respond with account information, credit card numbers, passwords or other sensitive information. This information can then be used by the thieves to order goods and services or obtain credit.
A phishing e-mail can look quite convincing, with company logos and banners copied from actual, legitimate Web sites. Often, they will tell recipients that their security procedure has changed or that they need to update (or validate) personal information and the recipients will be directed to a look-alike Web site. Phishing attempts may also try to impart a sense of urgency to get recipients to respond before thinking through the situation.
Phone Calls – A call is received from a person or automated system stating they are from the bank or the fraud department at the bank. They state that your account has been compromised or your debit or credit card has been suspended/deactivated. To reactivate it or remove any holds, you must provide personal information – Account Number, Card Number, Social Security Number, Expiration Date, PIN, etc.
Never provide this information – especially if you did not initiate the call. Always call or visit your local bank office to authenticate the request. You bank has all your account information. Know who you are speaking with.
Lottery Scams – You receive notification that you won a lottery (usually from a foreign country) for which you never purchased a ticket. You are told you will receive a portion of the proceeds in a check. You are directed to deposit it into your account and send a good portion of the check back by wire transfer to pay any fees or taxes due. Of course, the check you deposited is bogus and is debited against your account when it is returned by the bank it was drawn on. If you sent the funds via wire transfer, you are then out those dollars.
Variations of this scam involve the overpayment for the purchase of something large – like a car – where you are told to give the excess money paid to you to a ficticious shipping company. The original check is bad and when it is returned, you do not have the sale you thought you did and you are out the money that was paid to the bogus shipper.
You receive a large check and are enlisted to to do some “Mystery Shopping” at a large retailer (Walmart, Kmart, Sears, JC Penney, Macy’s, etc). You are told to cash or deposit the check into your account, use a portion of funds to make a purchase, complete a survey and return the survey, receipt and remaining funds – less a fee you can keep. The original check, once again, is not valid and you are out the amount of the purchase plus the funds you returned to them.
Consumers should be vigilant. For more information on phishing, visit any of the following:
FBI FRAUD ALERT Poster- http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/fraud-alert-poster-pdf
Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.- http://www.fdic.gov/consumers/consumer/news/cnwin0304/phishing.html
Federal Trade Commission - http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/alerts/alt127.htm
Anti-Phishing Working Group – http://www.antiphishing.org
National Consumers League – http://www.phishinginfo.org/
OCC Consumer Protection News – http://www.occ.gov/Consumer/phishing.htm
Tips to Thwart Phishing
Never give out personal financial information in response to an unsolicited phone call, fax or e-mail, no matter how official it may seem.
Do not respond to e-mails that may warn of dire consequences unless you validate your information immediately. Contact the company to confirm the e-mail’s validity using a telephone number or Web address you know to be genuine.
Check your credit card and bank account statements regularly and look for unauthorized transactions, even small ones. Some thieves hope small transactions will go unnoticed. Report discrepancies immediately.
When submitting financial information online, look for the padlock or key icon at the bottom of your Internet browser. Also, many secure Internet addresses, though not all use “https” to signify that your information is secure during transmission.
Report suspicious activity to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, http://www.ic3.gov/, a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center.