Online Fraud and Identity Theft Protection
Cornerstone Bank wants to help you to protect yourself against online schemes. Email fraud is one of the more common and damaging methods used to scam customers on the Internet today. By educating yourself and following some simple tips you will be less likely to fall victim to one of these schemes.
Cornerstone Bank will never ask for you to send personal or financial information by,
in response to, or via a link in an Email.
Phishing is a fraud technique commonly used to attempt to trick people into revealing their account number and password.
Here is how a phishing scam typically works: The “phisher” sends out e-mails that are designed to look legitimate, as though they were really from a reputable source (like Cornerstone). These fake e-mails generally ask for either security details or direct customers to a counterfeit banking site. If the use of a counterfeit site is employed, the phisher asks the customer to enter their complete security details - password, security questions, user name... ANYTHING THAT THE LEGITIMATE SITE COULD or WOULD ASK FOR. This information is captured and then used to commit fraud.
If you receive an e-mail requesting your security details do not reply and do not follow the instructions even if the e-mail suggests that you need to take immediate action to stop your account from being frozen or it indicates that you may incur a fine if you don't.
These are just tricks that the fraudster may be using to manipulate you into giving away your personal or account information.
If you suspect a phishing attack, call us at 856-439-0300 or forward the suspect e-mail to email@example.com. Then, delete the suspicious email from your mailbox.
Website Spoofing - Involves you trying to visit a website but accidentally keying-in or linking-to a different address. This may lead you to a website that mimics the legitimate site that you were trying to visit. The spoofed Internet site may route whatever information you provide to criminals. This can include your account numbers, Social Security Numbers, credit card information, passwords and personal identification numbers. To make spoof sites seem legitimate, criminals may use the logos, graphics, names and code of the real company's site. They also may attempt to fake the URL that appears in the address field at the top of your browser window and the padlock that appears in the lower right corner.
Scams such as Phishing and Spoofing to commit identity theft are becoming more prevalent. Protecting your personal information from identity theft is a crucial matter and there are many ways the unscrupulous can gain access to such information. Identity theft involves the use of your personal information - such as your name, Social Security number, credit card or bank account numbers, or other identifying information - by someone else, to commit fraud or other crimes.
- Do not open emails from senders you do not know.
- Never access a web site from a link in an email, especially a web site that asks for personal information.
- If you have any doubts about the authenticity of an email, do not respond; call the sender or type in the web address.
- Beware of emails sent offering you a prize or a discount and then asking you to choose a user id and password. Since most people use the same access information for several accounts thieves can collect your login information and try them at other sites, like financial institutions or credit card sites.
- Do monitor your account activity closely and watch for unusual activity.
- Change your password regularly, for example every 60 days.
- Note that fraudulent emails often include misspellings and poor grammar.
- Keep your anti-virus software up-to-date.
- Beware of emails with a sense of urgency; attempting to rush you into action. Messages like,
"Update now or we'll close your account...".
- Do not include personal or sensitive data in or in response to an email.
- Report lost or stolen credit and debit cards immediately!
Identity Theft Prevention
- Protect your Social Security number, credit card numbers, account passwords and other personal information. Never divulge this kind of information unless you initiate the contact with a person or company you know and trust.
- Minimize the damage in case your wallet is lost or stolen. Do not carry around more checks, credit cards or other bank items than you really expect to need.
- Protect your incoming and outgoing postal mail. Those envelopes may contain checks, credit card applications and other items that can be very valuable to a fraud artist. Promptly remove mail from your mailbox.
- Keep thieves from turning your trash into their cash. Any paper you do not need to keep that contains private information should be shredded.
- Practice home security. Safely store extra checks, credit cards, and documents that list your Social Security number, and similar valuable items.
- Pay attention to your bank account statements and credit card bills. Contact your financial institution immediately if there is a discrepancy in your records or if you notice something suspicious, such as a missing payment or an unauthorized withdrawal.
- Review your credit report approximately once a year.
- Equifax at (800) 685-1111
- Experian at (888) 397-3742
- Trans Union at (800) 888-4213
Fighting Back Against Identity Theft
For additional information on identity theft, visit the Federal Trade Commission's Website at http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/idtheft/idt04.shtm
Guard Against Internet Thieves and Electronic Scams
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has produced a multimedia presentation to help consumers protect themselves from identity theft. The presentation provides information on steps consumers should take to secure their computer and protect themselves from identity theft, as well as actions consumers should take if they become a victim of identity theft. To view the video, visit the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation's Website at: http://www.fdic.gov/consumers/consumer/guard/index.html
Safe Computing Practices
- Install and maintain anti-virus software
- Install and maintain anti-spyware software
- Maintain a personal firewall
- Keep your computer software up-to-date
- Take Control of Your Email
- When Web Browsing, make sure you have the correct web address or use bookmarks to access regular known sites