FOR YOUR PROTECTION
Enterprise Bank is committed to protecting your financial information and keeping your personal information confidential. Outside the safeguards that we employ, it is important that you stay informed about potential threats to your privacy and financial security and take steps to protect yourself.
E-MAILS ASKING FOR PERSONAL INFORMATION
“Phishing” (pronounced “fishing”) is the term used to describe emails made to look like they’ve come from legitimate companies but that actually come from identity thieves. They are written to scare you into acting without thinking it through. These emails usually have urgent sounding messages warning you of account problems or other issues used to trick you into clicking through to a scam website. The scam website generally asks you to enter your user name and password or other account and personal information.
Reputable companies should never ask you to enter your password or personal financial information in an email format.
“Pharming” (pronounced “farming”) is when criminal hackers redirect Internet traffic from one website to a different, identical-looking site in order to trick you into entering your user name and password into the database on their fake site.
Take notice of the web address where you enter ID’s and Passwords. Be aware of expired security certificates. If you notice something suspicious about a trusted website, report it, by telephone if possible, to the business or site owner. It may be a normal glitch or a new update, or it may be a mistake a criminal has made when trying to duplicate a website.
CHECK YOUR CREDIT
Contact the major credit reporting companies annually to review your credit report. The three major credit bureaus are Equifax (800) 685-1111; Experian (888) 397-3742; and TransUnion (800) 916-8800. It may be helpful to order from all three, since each one derives its information from different sources.
Identity thieves can use children’s social security numbers to obtain credit fraudulently; you may want to inquire about your children’s reports as well.
PROTECT YOUR INFORMATION
Protect your information offline as well as online. Dangers of identity theft are not unique to the internet. Identity thieves can easily find the information they need to steal your financial security in your trash or by gaining access to your mailbox.
Pay close attention to items containing your social security number, account numbers, and credit offers and dispose of them properly. Begin a practice of shredding your unwanted mail containing this information, securing your mailbox and emptying your wallet of unnecessary personal information.
Before you provide your social security number or other personal information to anyone, be sure to understand why it is needed and how it will be used. Read and ask questions of privacy policies before you provide this sensitive information. More information on how your Social Security number can be used is available on the Social Security Administration’s website, www.ssa.gov.
PROTECT YOUR COMPUTER
Protect your computer from intruders by using antivirus software, firewalls, and encryption services. Keep all software and browsers up to date. Check for and install all security patches available from the developer of your operating system. Run antivirus software to check incoming emails and update the virus definitions frequently. Set up a firewall to prevent intruders from gaining access to your network or computer.
In addition to using protective software, you should choose strong passwords to protect your accounts. Don’t use your personal information as a password. Mix upper and lowercase letters and special characters. Keep your passwords for each account unique. Do not save them on your computer. Choose browser settings that will not allow passwords to be saved.
Do not trust public computers to access secure accounts. These browsers can be configured to remember passwords.
REVIEW ACCOUNT STATEMENTS FREQUENTLY
Review credit card, bank, and financial account statements monthly or more frequently where applicable. Report unauthorized account activity to your financial institution within two business days to limit your liability.
IF YOUR FINANCIAL IDENTITY HAS BEEN COMPROMISED
- Contact the fraud departments of any one of the three consumer reporting companies to place a fraud alert on your report. This tells any creditors to contact you before opening any new accounts or changing your existing accounts. Equifax: 1-800-525-6285; Experian: 1-888-397-3742: TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289;
- Close the accounts that you know or believe have been tampered with or opened fraudulently.
- File a report with your local police or the police in the community where the identity theft took place. Get a copy of the report or at the very least, the number of the report, to submit to your creditors and others that may require proof of the crime.
- File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. For more information on how to proceed, visit their website, www.ftc.gov.
- Change all the passwords of your online accounts.