Protect your accounts and yourself from fraud and identity theft with these following tips
Fraud is constantly evolving, so be on guard for anything that appears to be suspicious. Be cautious when making decisions or sharing personal information regarding your finances.
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- Keep receipts and note debits in your checking register.
- Sign your ATM/Debit Card.
- Keep ATM/Debit Card secure at all times.
- If documents/receipts contain personal information and/or ATM/Debit Card numbers, use a cross-cut shredder before disposal.
- Get extra online protection by signing up for Verified by Visa® or MasterCard® SecureCode.
- Never write your Personal Identification Number (PIN) or code on your card, or share with anyone.
- Create a Personal Identification Number (PIN) that is not easily guessed.
- Stay alert and only use ATM facilities with adequate lighting and that do not look altered in any way.
- Do not permit unauthorized access to anyone attempting to enter a facility with you (i.e. ATMs located inside of the facility). Only those individuals with access should enter.
- When using a drive-up ATM, make sure all of your car doors are locked and that only the driver-side window is open. Be alert to anyone approaching your car.
- Don't let others see the ATM screen or keypad as you enter information.
- Make sure you have completed your transaction and properly exit from the ATM terminal before allowing the next person to use the ATM.
- Place all cash securely in your wallet before exiting the ATM facility.
- Always take the ATM receipt with you and don't leave personal notes or papers in the ATM area.
- Don't help someone learn how to use the ATM using your card.
- Never use an ATM machine that is damaged or appears to be tampered with.
- Establish "strong" passwords that contain a combination of letters, capital letters, numbers and special characters.
- Never use your Social Security number as a user ID for online accounts.
- Keep your personal information in a secure place.
- Be aware and cautious when opening an attachment, responding to an email, clicking on a link or pop-up message or replying to a text message from known or unknown senders that ask you to verify personal or account information such as: passwords, Social Security numbers, personal identification numbers (PINs), credit or debit card numbers, or other confidential information. If you are concerned about the authenticity of an email or text message that appears to be from a financial institution, call the number on the back of your ATM/Debit Card or account statement.
- Don't respond if you get a message – by email, text, pop-up message or phone – that asks you to call a phone number asking you to verify personal or account information in order to access a refund. Any request should be made in writing.
- Be aware when making purchases online, especially with subscriptions for you may be agreeing to ongoing payments. If you are shopping online, don't provide your personal or financial information through a company's website until you have checked for indicators that the site is secure, like a lock icon on the browser's status bar or a website URL that begins "https:" (the "s" stands for "secure").
- Always logout of secure sites. Don't simply close the window.
- Set up email notifications or text alerts when your account reaches a certain balance or exceeds transactions of a certain amount.
- If you are on an unfamiliar site that you want to do business with, call the seller's phone number so you know you can reach them if you need to.
- Type the site's name into a search engine: If you find unfavorable reviews posted, you may be better off doing business with a different company.
- If you access online banking via your mobile device we suggest you add a passcode to access the device for additional protection.
- Secure your internet connection. Always protect your home wireless network with a password. When connecting to public Wi-Fi networks, be cautious about what information you send.
Be Informed. Be Aware. Protect Yourself.
- Protecting the integrity of your information from identity theft and internet fraud is a priority at the NYCB Family of Banks. Email fraud, commonly referred to as phishing are phony email messages sent to you from hackers and cyber criminals with the intent of stealing personal and financial information.
NYCB may send periodic emails that contain links to NYCB webpages and/or to download the NYCB Mobile App. If you are concerned about the authenticity of an email or about clicking on links in an email message from NYCB, you may also type the link directly into the address bar of your web browser. If you receive what appears to be a suspicious email claiming to be from the NYCB Family of Banks, please forward it to OnlineBanking@myNYCB.com.
Use Security Software That Updates Automatically
- Keep your operating system and web browser up-to-date, and learn about their Security features. Having the latest Security/virus software, web browser, and operating systems are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats. Turn on automatic updates so you receive the newest fixes as they become available.
- Update firewalls, anti-spyware, and anti-virus software to protect your home computer.
- Report any suspicious email, text message or phone call to the Federal Trade Commission by calling 1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338).
Protect Your Passwords
- Avoid passwords like your birth date, the last four digits of your Social Security Number, your phone number, number ranges (such as 1111 or 1234) or a common word.
- Keep your passwords in a secure place, and out of plain sight.
- Change your passwords regularly (at a minimum, every 90 days).
- Assign different passwords for each online account you access.
- Avoid auto-memory features in your browser to remember User ID and passwords.
- Keep personal information personal. Hackers can use social media profiles to figure out your passwords and answer those Security questions in the password reset tools. Lock down your Privacy settings and avoid posting things like birthdays, addresses, mother's maiden name, etc.
- Keep your checks in a safe, secure location.
- Review your statements, account activity and check images at least once a month.
- Be aware of when statements should arrive and immediately review your banking statement for unauthorized transactions.
- Use a cross-cut shredder to destroy documents containing personal information before disposal.
- Notify the Post Office of any change of address or delivery instructions for your mail.
Ten common schemes in use today by hackers and cyber criminals to separate you from your money.
- You receive a letter informing you that you have won a lottery. Enclosed with the letter is a cashier's check for the taxes and other fees. The letter states that you must wire this amount to a 3rd party to claim your winnings. The check is found to be counterfeit after you wire out the funds.
- You receive a letter with a cashier's check enclosed. The letter indicates that you have been chosen to be a secret shopper for a few companies, including a money transfer office. You must use the cashier's check enclosed to pay for items and services and fill out a survey. After you've spent the proceeds and wired money against the cashier's check deposit, the check is found to be counterfeit.
- There are a variety of emails that state that the sender is on vacation and needs funds to be wired to them, as they can't get home for one reason or another (e.g. they were mugged, need medical care, or lost their passport.) These emails are typically from computers infected with a virus that sends mass solicitations to everyone on the sender's contact list.
- An email stating that a person in a foreign country has inherited a large sum of money but can't claim it. They offer to give you a percentage of the inheritance to receive it into your account and then wire them their share. The check sent to you is found to be counterfeit after you wire out the funds.
- You sell an item online and the buyer sends you a bank check or money order that is greater than the purchase price, and asks you to wire the balance back to them. The check is then found to be counterfeit after you wire out the funds.
- A person presents you with a lottery ticket that is a supposed winner and states that they can't claim it because they are in this country illegally. They ask you to put up some of your money as a sign of good faith. They will take your money and leave you with a worthless counterfeit lottery ticket.
- You answer an ad online for a job advertised as "Payroll Processor": receiving checks from a company to deposit into your personal account, and then wiring funds to "employees" for a fee. The check is found to be counterfeit after you wire out the funds.
- An email from a government agency with an attachment to open to help release funds. This may be a phishing virus that will record your passwords as you enter them and transfer them to fraudsters.
- Letters with U.S. Government Agency letterheads claim that the agency is holding payments from foreign companies owed to you, but to release the payments, you need to pay a large fee. The letterheads are forged, and no payments exist.
- You are contacted via email or telephone in response to a resume you have posted online. The person solicits you for a job as an international money transfer agent. They will send you official bank checks and you will then be required to immediately wire the proceeds out to a variety of locations, keeping an agreed-upon amount for your services. The checks will be found to be counterfeit after you wire out the funds.