Computer Related Fraud
Criminals use a variety of scams to obtain personal
identifying data (such as account numbers, passwords, PINs, and banking
information) to gain unauthorized access to financial accounts, for identity
theft, or engage in other illegal acts. Social engineering describes
techniques used by cyber criminals that trick people into revealing
personal identifying information. Common scams include:
Phishing, spoofing, pharming are types of email and website fraud scams. It involves a
fraudster sending you an email request that appears to be from a
legitimate business with whom you normally deal. These emails often
instruct you to "update" or "validate" your information. In some
cases they will even indicate it is to prevent security breaches and
identity theft. They will request personal confidential
information such as account numbers, passwords, PINs, SSN, and other
sensitive information via email or by directing you to a phony web site
that looks like the legitmate business (even down to copied
logos). If you comply with the email instructions, you will
unknowingly provide the information to a thief. Then the
information will be used to transfer money, make payments, open up new
accounts, and commit other illegal acts.
Vishing uses the same
tactics as phishing; however it is typcially done through the
SMiShing uses text messages
on cellular phones to bait receivers into providing confidential
Protect Yourself by Controlling Online Risks
While online banking is safe, as a general rule you should always be careful about giving out your personal financial information over the Internet. Review the following tips to protect your personal information while using the Internet.
- Regularly log into your online accounts to verify that your bank, credit, and debit card statements and transactions are legitimate.
- Be suspicious of any e-mail with urgent requests for personal financial information.
- If you receive an unsolicited e-mail from any source asking you to click on a link to visit a site and input personal data, be very wary of it.
- Be cautious about opening any attachments or downloading any files from e-mails, regardless of who sent them.
- Instead of clicking on links in emails, type in the URL that you're familiar with, such as www.citizenscommunitybank.net or select the Web address saved in your browser’s “Favorites”.
- If an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is and should be avoided.
- If you have any doubts about the validity of an email, contact the sender using a telephone number you know to be genuine.
- Before you initiate an online transaction, make sure your personal information is protected by looking for indicators that the site is secure. URLs for secure sites typically begin with "https" instead of "http" and display a lock in the lower right corner of your browser.
- Use anti-virus software and keep it up-to-date.
- Make sure you have applied the latest security patches for your computer. Most software providers, like Microsoft, offer free security patches.
- If you have broad-band Internet access, such as cable modem or DSL, make sure that you have a firewall.
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