Protect Yourself from Online Fraud
“We suspect an unauthorized transaction on your account. To ensure that your account is not compromised, please click the link below and confirm your identity.”
“During our regular verification of accounts, we could not verify your account information. Please click here to update and verify your information.”
If you receive an email message similar to these, don’t bite. They are examples of a scam called “phishing” and the perpetrators of this crime want one thing: your personal information. That may include your Social Security number, your account or credit card numbers, your password or login information. Giving this information can result in identity theft, which can wreak havoc with your credit report and your ability to get credit and loans in the future.
Be informed! Know how to protect yourself from online fraud.
- If you access your accounts online, log in to those accounts regularly.
- Regularly check your financial and credit card statements to make sure all transactions are legitimate. If anything looks suspicious, contact your financial institution immediately.
- Be suspicious of any email that’s not personalized with your name; valid messages from your financial institution are personalized. They would never ask you for personal information in this manner.
- Never respond to or click on email requests for personal information, particularly if you are asked to verify your account information. Phishers copy logos from financial institution websites and use look-alike headers to trick victims into handing over personal information.
- Be suspicious of urgent email requests claiming to be from your bank or from any other financial institution. Phishers typically include upsetting or exciting—but false—statements to get you to react quickly.
- Never click on links within an email message to get to a web page. Instead, call the institution on the phone, or log on to the website directly by typing the company’s web address in your browser.