For Your Information
ID Theft and Security
DON'T FALL VICTIM TO ONLINE SCAMS
Your security is important to us. Here at Bay Commercial Bank, we would like to provide tools and resources to help prevent identity theft.
What is "Phishing?"
Phishing (FISHing) is a high tech scam that uses spam or pop-up messages to attempt to deceive you into disclosing your credit card numbers, bank account information, Social Security number, passwords, and/or other sensitive information.
What is "Spoofing?"
Pretending to be something it is not, on the internet, usually an e-mail or a web site.
How to Report Phishing
We suggest reporting phishing e-mails or spoofed web sites to the following groups:
- Forward the email to: email@example.com.
- Forward the email to the Federal Trade Commission at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Forward the email to the "abuse" email address at the company that is being spoofed.
- Notify the Internet Crime Complaint Center of the FBI by filing a complaint on their web site.
RECOMMENDED ACTIONS IF YOU HAVE BECOME A VICTIM OF A PHISHING SCAM
If You Have Given Out Your Credit, Debit or ATM Card Information
- Report the incident to the card issuer as quickly as possible.
- Report,using toll-free numbers and 24-hour service that many companies have established to deal with such emergencies.
- Request your card issuer to close your compromised account number and reissue you a new card with a different number.
- Monitor your account activity and review account statements carefully after the information loss.
- If any unauthorized charges appear, call the card issuer immediately and follow up with a hard copy letter via a traditional delivery service such as the US Postal Service describing each questionable charge. Keep a copy for your records.
If You Have Given Out Your Bank Account Information
- Report the theft of this information to the bank as quickly as possible.
- Request the bank to close the compromised account and re-open a like account with a different number.
If You Have Downloaded a Virus or "Trojan Horse"
Some phishing attacks use viruses and/or "Trojan Horses" to install programs called "key loggers" on your computer. These programs capture and send out any information that you type to the phisher, including credit card numbers, user names and passwords, Social Security number, etc. If this happens, it's likely you may not be aware of it until you notice unusual transactions on your account.
To minimize this risk, you should:
- Install and/or update anti-virus and personal firewall software.
- Update all virus definitions and run a full scan.
- If your system appears to have been compromised, repair it and then change your password again, since you may well have transmitted the new one to the hacker.
- Check your other accounts. The fraudsters may have helped themselves to many different accounts: eBay account, PayPal, your e-mail ISP, online bank accounts, online trading accounts and other e-commerce accounts, and everything else for which you use online passwords.
If You Have Given Out Your Personal Identification Information
If you believe you have given out personal information such as your name, address, and Social Security number to someone who may use it for fraud:
Contact the three major credit reporting agencies – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion and do the following:
- Request that the agencies place a fraud alert and a victim's statement in your file.
- Request a free copy of your credit report to check whether any accounts were opened without your consent.
- Request that the agencies remove inquiries and/or fraudulent accounts stemming from the theft.
Major Credit Bureaus
- To order your report, call 800.685.1111 or write: P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta GA 30374-0241.
- To report fraud, call 800.525.6285 and write: P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta GA 30374-0241.
- For the hearing impaired, call 800.255.0056 and ask the operator to call the Auto Disclosure Line at 800.685.1111 to request a copy of your report.
- To order your report, call: 888.397.3742 or write: P.O. Box 2002, Allen TX 75013.
- To report fraud, call: 888.397.3742 and write: P.O. Box 9530, Allen TX 75013.
- For the hearing impaired, call: 800.972.0322.
- To order your report, call: .800.888.4213 or write: P.O. Box 1000, Chester PA 19022.
- To report fraud, call: .800.680.7289 and write: Fraud Victims Assistance Division, P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton CA 92634.
- For the hearing impaired, call: 877.553.7803.
Additional Actions to Take
- If bank accounts were set up without your consent, close them.
- Contact your local police department to file a criminal report.
- Contact the Social Security Administrations Fraud Hotline to report the unauthorized use of your personal identification information.
- Notify the Department of Motor Vehicle of your identity theft.
- Check to see whether an unauthorized driver's license number has been issued in your name.
- Notify the passport office to be on the lookout for anyone ordering a passport in your name.
- File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. Ask for a free copy of "ID Theft: When Bad Things happen in Your Good Name", a guide that will help you guard against and recover from your theft – and guard against it in the future.
- File a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) by visiting their Web site: www.ic3.gov. IC3 is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C), with a mission to address fraud committed over the Internet. For victims of Internet fraud, the Center provides a convenient and easy-to-use reporting mechanism that alerts authorities of a suspected criminal or civil violation.
- Document the names and phone numbers of everyone you speak to regarding the incident. Follow up your phone calls with letters. Keep copies of all correspondence.
Identity Theft Resources
How to Practice Safe Computing
The number and sophistication of phishing and spoofing scams sent out to consumers is continuing to increase dramatically. While online banking is widely considered to be as safe as or safer than in-branch or ATM banking, as general rule you should be careful about giving out your personal financial information over the Internet. Remember, no reputable financial institution will ever request personal information via e-mail.
Here is a list of recommendations to follow in order to avoid becoming a victim of scams:
1. Be suspicious of any e-mail with urgent requests for personal financial information. Phishers have been known to include upsetting or enticing (but false) statements in their e-mails to get people to react immediately. More recently, some phishers have toned down their language, as e-mail recipients have become more aware of the use of this tactic. Either way, the e-mail typically asks for information such as user names, passwords, credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, etc.
2. Be careful of e-mails that are not personalized and/or may contain spelling errors and/or awkward syntax and phrasing. Many phishing e-mails are sent in great bulk and, therefore, are not personalized. If you are suspicious of an e-mail claiming to be from your institution that is not personalized, call your institution before responding. Many are also being sent from other countries from individuals for whom English is a foreign language, thus resulting in misspelled words and awkward syntax and phrasing.
3. Be careful of personalized e-mails that ask for personal information. Be suspicious of any e-mail that contains some personal financial information, such as a bank account number and asks for other information, such as a PIN. Your bank will never ask for or send you personal financial information by e-mail.
4. Do not use links in an e-mail to get to any Web page. Instead, call the bank on the telephone to confirm the address, or log onto the Web site directly by typing in the Web address in your browser.
5. Do not complete forms in e-mails messages that ask for personal financial information. Your bank would never ask you to complete such a form within an e-mail message.
6. Only communicate information, such as credit cards numbers or account information, via a secure Web site or the telephone. When submitting financial information to a Web site, look for the padlock or key icon at the bottom of your browser, and make sure the Internet address begins with "https". A secure web server designation can be found by checking the beginning of the web address in your browser's address bar – the address should begin with https://.... While you can not be completely sure that a Web site is secure when its address starts with "https", you can be sure the web site is not secure when it does not start with "https".
7. Regularly log on to your online accounts and check your bank, credit and debit card statements to ensure that all transactions are legitimate. One of the real advantages of banking online is being able to regularly view your account for unauthorized or unusual activity. If anything is suspicious, contact your bank and all card issuers immediately.
8. Ensure that your browser is up to date and security patches applied. Always visit your browser's home page to download the latest security updates even if they don't alert you to do so.
9. Use online statements to reduce the volume of paper mailed. Paper today is the cause of more actual instances of identity fraud than are electronic thefts.