Protect Yourself From Email Hoaxes & Phishing Scams!
Email Hoaxes and Phishing scams are high-tech activities that use spam or pop-up messages to
deceive you into providing personal information such as credit card numbers, bank account
information, Social Security number, passwords, etc.
These fraudulent messages claim to be from a business or organization that you interact with such
as your bank, online payment service, government agency or even an Internet service provider (ISP).
The messages generally state that you need to ďupdateĒ or ďvalidateĒ your account information and
may threaten severe consequences if you donít respond. The message directs you to a Web site that
appears to be a legitimate organizationís site, but it isnít.
To help protect yourself from Phishing scams, you may want to consider taking the following measures:
Protect Yourself From Identity Theft!
- If you get an email or pop-up message that asks for personal or financial information, do not reply or click on the link in
the message. Legitimate companies donít ask for this information via email. If you are concerned about your account, contact the
organization in the email using a telephone number you know to be genuine.
- Donít email personal or financial information. Email is not a secure method of transmitting personal information.
- Review credit card and bank account statements as soon as you receive them to determine whether there are any unauthorized charges.
- Use up-to-date anti-virus software and a firewall. Some phishing emails contain software that can harm your computer or track your
activities on the Internet without your knowledge. Anti-virus software and a firewall can protect you from inadvertently accepting such unwanted files.
- Be cautious about opening any attachment or downloading any files from emails, regardless of who sent them.
To help protect yourself from identity theft, you may want to consider taking the following measures:
For additional information please check the Federal Trade Commissions Website a
- Donít give out any personal information over the Internet, by mail
or over the phone.
- Donít carry your Social Security Card.
- Secure all your personal information in your home.
- Donít put mail in an unsecured mailbox. Use a post office collection
box or your local post office.
- Have your mail held by the U.S. Postal Service if you are going out of town.
- Shred or tear charge receipts, copies of credit applications, insurance forms, checks,
bank statements, physician statements and credit offers you get in the mail.
- Carry only the identification and credit/debit cards that you need.
- Place passwords on your credit cards, bank and phone accounts.
- Avoid using information that is easily available for passwords, such as, your
motherís maiden name or your birth date.
- Ask about information security procedures at such places as your workplace, doctorís
office or other businesses that
collect personally identifying information.
- Only give your Social Security Number when absolutely necessary.
- Follow up with creditors if your bills do not arrive on time.
- Beware of promotional scams.
- Cancel unused credit cards.
- Have check orders delivered to your bank rather than your home.
Protect your ATM Transactions!
To help protect your ATM transactions, you may want to consider taking the following measures:
- Never disclose your personal identification number (PIN) to anyone.
- Never use an ATM with a blank screen.
- Do not force your card into the ATM card slot.
- Stand close to the ATM and use your body and hand as a shield to make sure that nobody sees you keying in your PIN.
- Keep your hand over the card slot to make sure nobody can swap or take your card.
- Follow the instructions on the ATM screen carefully.
- Do not insert your card until asked to do so by the display screen.
- Only put in your PIN when asked to do so by the display screen.
- Avoid drawing cash late at night or when you are alone.
- Leave the ATM location if you do not feel safe or you are suspicious of individuals loitering around the ATM location. Come back later or use a different ATM.
- Never hurry when using an ATM. Make sure that you are not distracted, intimidated or rushed into your transaction.
- Never accept help from strangers when using an ATM. Always be wary of strangers asking for help. While one distracts you the other steals your card and money.
- Do not count your cash in front of the ATM.
- Avoid using ATMís in secluded areas after dark.
- If the ATM retains your card, cancel it immediately.
- Never allow a bystander to call the toll free number on your behalf Ė they could be tricking you into thinking that your card has been stopped.
- Always check that it is your card you get back from the ATM.
- Be aware of the daily withdrawal limits.
- Be aware of the different transaction fees for ATMís.
Thank You for your Loyalty, Trust and Business!