How to Protect Yourself From Fraud
While scammers are getting smarter with how they steal your personal information, we think it's important that you know that staying informed is your first line of defense. By keeping on top of your transactions, you can spot any suspicious activity.
And with Summit's online banking and mobile app, you can view your transactions 24/7. We can text you each time your account is used for a transaction with free debit card alerts, so you can always be in the know of how your money is being spent.
We suggest that you take a look at your statements and detailed account information periodically to help combat fraud:
- Monitor your bank statements monthly.
- Review your credit report at least once a year.
- Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft
These dos and don'ts of identity theft protection will help to reduce the risk of attackers accessing your data and trying to steal your personal identifying information:
- Include your Social Security Number or Driver's License number on sensitive documents.
- Leave incoming mail lying around.
- Respond to unsolicited requests for personal or account information.
- Shred or destroy any junk mail before you throw it away.
- Use a safe deposit box to protect important documents.
- Review your credit report at least once a year.
- Drop your mail in an official postal mailbox.
- How to be Safe Online
- Look beyond the logo. To make fraudulent emails or websites appear real, scammers often include actual logos and images of legitimate companies. They also convey a sense of urgency, stating that if you fail to provide, update, or verify your personal or account information, access to your accounts will be suspended. It's important that you look beyond the logo and not give out your information.
- Use your spam filter. Many email services now have spam filters that minimize the amount of spam you receive. The filters can help you minimize the number of fraudulent emails in your inbox.
- Type, don't click. Even if you do open a suspicious email, don't click on any links. By clicking on the links, you could unknowingly download a virus or spyware to your computer. Even if you think the email is legitimate, type web addresses into your browser instead of clicking on links. If the email is from an institution you do business with, use a bookmark that you have already created to visit the company's website.
- Change your online passwords often. It's good to change your password every 30 to 60 days. Be creative with your passwords - stay away from obvious passwords like your ZIP code, year of birth, or sensitive information such as your mother's maiden name or your Social Security Number. Include symbols and/or upper and lower case letters so passwords cannot be easily intercepted.
- Update your anti-virus and anti-spam software. By keeping anti-virus and anti-spam software up-to-date on your computers, you make it more difficult for scammers to access your personal and account information. You can purchase anti-virus and anti-spyware software at major retail stores, as well as on the Internet.
- Delete emails from unknown senders with nonsensical subject lines.
- Mobile Device Security
Summit strives to provide you with convenient and secure access to banking on your mobile device. However, as mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones have become the preferred way to manage and store personal information, including your account details, those devices have also become big targets for hackers and cybercrime. It is crucial to take precautions to protect your sensitive data from misuse.
Summit offers several ways to help protect your private banking information on mobile devices:
- Multi-factor account verification - helps protect your data. Set this as your preference for personal and public devices
- Timed sessions – Banking sessions that log you out of your accounts after inactivity to help keep your information confidential from anyone else who may use your device.
- Touch Authentication - adds a layer of defense by allowing access to information only by using your unique fingerprint. (Available for iPhone and Android users with touch authentication capabilities)
Here are some tips to protect your confidential information on your mobile device:
- Never lower your security settings, it is very easy for criminals to access an unsecured device. Always use the passcode feature to lock your phone. Do not give your passcode information to anyone.
- Don't store your personal data on your mobile device. Log off of mobile banking sessions when transactions are completed.
- Don't click suspicious links or attachments. While it may be difficult to spot some phishing attempts, it's important to be cautious about all communications you receive, including those claiming to be from trusted entities.
- Make sure your device’s security and software updates are current.
- Do not use free public Wi-Fi connections for banking transactions. Use your phone carrier's Internet connections for enhanced security.
- Never respond to any text messages asking you to verify your account information. Summit will never ask you for your personal information via text message.
Should your device become lost or stolen, you should report these incidents to your wireless provider immediately. They may be able to locate or disable the device. Then call our Contact Center at 877-776-9722 to have mobile banking access disabled.
- Safeguard Against Credit Card Fraud and Check Scams
- Sign your cards immediately once they arrive in the mail.
- Memorize your PIN and don't write it on anything, especially something in your wallet.
- Don't enter your card online unless you're on a secure site. Don't send your credit card number in the mail.
- Keep a record of all your account numbers, expiration dates, and contact information for each issuer. This will come in handy if your wallet is lost or stolen.
- Report a lost or stolen card right away. Quick action will minimize potential loss and liability.
- Save your receipts to compare against your billing statement. When discarding receipts, tear them up or shred them.
- Monitor your statements monthly, making sure you recognize all charges. If you see any suspicious transactions, contact the bank immediately.
- Carefully review receipts for voided transactions and be sure they do not post to your account.
- Destroy your carbons. Do not leave them behind without tearing them up.
- Don't leave your purse, wallet, cards or receipts unattended. Always keep them secure or in your sight.
- Only carry cards that you need, leaving others in a safe place at home.
- Don't give out your account number unless you know and trust the company.
- In lieu of a signature on your credit card, write "verify signature on driver's license."
- Shield your hand from the view of others when entering your PIN at ATMs.
- Use direct deposit for paychecks, Social Security payments, and other regular deposits.
- Be aware of fake check scams that promise easy money for working at home, winning sweepstakes or depositing checks from foreign countries.
- Do not leave your checkbook unattended.
- Know who you are doing business with.
- Report lost or stolen checks immediately.
- Keep your Mail and Print Documents Secure
- Shred documents containing your personal and financial information before placing them in the trash.
- Report unauthorized transactions to Summit Community Bank immediately.
- Protecting your Computer, Online Accounts, and Email
Protect your computers like you protect your checkbook. The following tips will help you protect your computer and your online accounts:
- Be cognizant of your surroundings when using a public computer or working on a wireless network.
- Keep your online accounts active - such as Online Banking with Bill Pay - to watch for any suspicious transactions.
- Help protect your computer and your accounts by installing anti-spyware on your computer. Anti-spyware can help prevent the collection of your personal and account information without your knowledge.
- Update your anti-virus software regularly to help protect your computer against viruses and other harmful computer codes.
Many scammers randomly generate email addresses - that's why you may have received fraudulent emails that appear to be from banks you do not have an account with. They also purchase mailing lists, obtain email addresses online from Web pages, chat rooms, online auctions, and directories or from illegitimate sources.