Click below to learn about the current fraud trends in our area.
At FSB, we want to help keep you and your money safe.
Check out our tips and ideas below.
- Phishing, Vishing, and Mishing
- Protect Yourself
- Identity Theft
- ATM Security
- Check Security
- Online and Computer Security
Subject: Regarding Your Farmers State Bank account
Dear FSB customer,
We have noticed that you experienced trouble logging into your online banking. After three unsuccessful attempts to access your account, your account has been locked. This is done to secure your accounts and to protect your information. To unlock your account and verify your identity please follow this link and sign in.
Sincerely, Farmers State Bank Online Customer Service.
Phishing - Refers to emails sent to you by scammers, which are designed to trick you into providing your personal and banking information.
Examples of this type of email would be something claiming to be from your bank stating that they need you to verify account and/or personal information.
Often times there are spelling or grammar mistakes. They will also copy an institution’s logo and message format. Call to verify any suspicious email before submitting information. Often times they will refer to you as ‘account holder’ or ‘customer’ rather than by your name. They will also sign the email with a fake employee name or just ‘online banking team.' The verbiage to the right is an example of a fraudulent email.
Vishing - A combination of the words voice and phishing, vishing involves voice or telephone communication. In a majority of these, the telephone call will be automated. There are many different examples for this type of scam including fake charities, relief funds and lotteries.
Mishing - A combination of the words mobile and phishing, mishing involves the use of mobile phones in a scam. A typical mishing call or message involves a scammer posing as an employee from your financial institution or organization, claiming to need your personal details. Scammers can use mishing to verify your account information or to authorize purchases.
How to respond to phishing, vishing, or mishing
Contact your financial institution or the company to verify the call or email. Never use the contact information provided in either the call or email. Find the information yourself to verify it is correct. Sometimes the scammer will ask you to respond quickly, don’t. Their goal is to not give you time to think.
Strong passwords tips:
- Use length and complexity. Avoid using personal information in the password. For example, don’t use your name and birth date.
- Use at least one number.
- Use at least one capital letter.
- Use at least one symbol.
- Recommended minimum of 12 characters in length for strong passwords, and 15 characters for highly confidential sites.
- Think of a sentence, and use the first letter of each word in your password. For example:
My 2nd son was born at 1:15 St. Lukes in May = M2swb@115SLiM
Don’t get hacked
Make sure your computer is actively protected.
- Use different passwords for different accounts.
- Never share your password with anyone else.
- Never use a public computer (hotel, library, etc.) to log into an account.
- If you write down your password, be sure to store it in a secure location, never in public view.
How to recognize them:
- If a financial institution sends you an email about account or personal info, contact them immediately before sending any information to insure its legitimacy. It is standard practice that Farmers State Bank does not request confidential information through email. Please report any such requests to Farmers State Bank.
- Avoid ‘pay now, get it later’ exchanges.
- Online sales – A scammer will purchase an item from you online, and send you a cashier’s check or money order, which is fake, and they will ask you to cash it first, and then send some of the money back to them.
- If you receive a notice that you are a winner in a lottery that you never entered, but in order to claim your prize, you must first send money in for taxes, this is a scam! Taxes are always taken out before you receive your prize.
- Relief fund scams – With the large number of catastrophic events around the world (tornados, hurricanes, etc.), it is easy for a scammer to pose as someone working for a relief fund that asks you to send money as a donation, often via phone. Always use caution in this type of situation.
- You are responsible and liable for items you cash or deposit into your account – whether it is a check, money order, transfer, etc.
- Do not accept payments for more than the amount of the service with the expectation that you send the buyer the difference.
- Be cautious when accepting checks from individuals you’ve only met online.
- Do not accept jobs in which you are paid or receive commission for facilitating money transfers through your account.
How to report a scam
If you think you are a victim, contact your financial institution immediately. They will help you take the proper precautions. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Identity theft is defined as someone stealing another’s personal information such as social security number or credit card to use as their own with no authority. There are additional forms of identity theft including: Skimming machines (copies the magnetic strip off of a card), credit cards (using someone else’s credit card/number), social networks, computer hacking, dumpster diving (finding important docs in the trash), and more.
- If you are a victim, keep detailed records of all correspondence.
- Close all accounts that have been tampered with immediately.
- If a social security number has been compromised, put a credit hold on it to stop any further misuse.
- Shred all important documents that have personal information if they are no longer needed, otherwise keep them in a safe spot. If documents containing personal information are thrown away, it is now in the hands of dumpster divers.
- It is important to increase your education on preventing identity fraud because no one can guarantee that they will never become a victim.
- Observe the area around the ATM before approaching.
- Avoid dimly lit ATMs. If you have to use one at night, make sure it is well lit, and try to have someone with you so you are not alone.
- Be suspicious and observant of anyone who may be close by or watching you at the ATM.
- Do not leave your receipt or card in the ATM.
- Leave the ATM before counting your cash.
- If you suspect anything different about the ATM, do not use it and call the authorities immediately.
- Be cautious when giving your routing number or account number to someone you don’t know, even when writing a check.
- Guard your check book, and dispose of void or canceled checks properly.
- It is best to not take your check book on long trips. Leave it locked up at home and instead purchase a Travel Card.
- Do not write checks using pencil or gel pens. Always use an ink pen, black or blue.
- Report a lost or stolen check book immediately.
- Make sure the name on the payee line is spelled out completely so it cannot be altered.
- Always put the correct date.
- When filling out the amount, start writing as far to the left as possible, then draw a line through the unused space to the right so the amount cannot be tampered with.
- Guard your deposit slips if they have your account number encoded on them. Never use them as ‘scrap paper.
- Protect your privacy. Be cautious about posting personal information such as date of birth, phone number, email address, home address, etc.
- Protect your online reputation. Businesses will often look online for more information about job seekers. A lot can be said about pictures and posts, so don’t put anything up that could be misleading or cost you your job.
- Remember, once it’s online, it’s there for the whole world to see.
- Back up all your information on an external hard drive, CD, DVD, or USB flash drive.
- Clear all personal data from your computer before donating or disposing of it. Manually deleted computer files can still be recovered, so contact the computer manufacturer’s technical services department and ask how to properly delete personal files.
- About 7% of persons age 16 or older were victims of identity theft in 2015.
- The majority of identity theft incidents (85%) involved the fraudulent use of existing account information, such as credit card or bank account information.
- Victims who had personal information used to open a new account or for other fraudulent purposes were more likely than victims of existing account fraud to experience financial, credit, and relationship problems and severe emotional distress.
- Over half of identity theft victims who were able to resolve any associated problems did so in a day or less; among victims who had personal information used for fraudulent purposes, 29% spent a month or more resolving problems.
- About 36% of identity theft victims reported moderate or severe emotional distress as a result of the incident.
- Direct and indirect losses from identity theft totaled $24.7 billion in 2015.
A code of behavior on the internet.
- Don’t be a cyber bully. Cyber bullying is being mean or rude to another person online or making threats.
- Report cyber bullying right away if seen. Also, print off any evidence for proof just in case the initial report had been deleted from the internet.
- Don’t share personal information online, and don’t be too open about the information you do share. Be cautious about sharing information too quickly.
- Don’t download or share copyrighted information. It is illegal and there are fines for this.
- If you shop, bank, and pay bills online know the site and make sure it is secure before submitting financial information.
- Use the internet to expand your social and business networks. There are many great social networking sites which makes it easy to stay in touch with family and friends.
- Use common sense and good judgment.
- Obey laws that apply to online behavior.
- Build your online reputation.