Conducting Your Transactions Online
Federal financial regulators are reporting that Internet threats have changed significantly over the past several years. Sophisticated hacking techniques and growing organized cyber-criminal groups are increasingly targeting financial institutions, compromising security controls and engaging in online account takeovers and fraudulent electronic funds transfers.
In order to help ensure the security of your online transactions, we want you to know that:
- We will never email, call or otherwise ask you for your user name, password or other electronic banking credentials
- You can help protect yourself by implementing alternative risk control processes like:
- Making sure you choose an adequate user name and password that, at a minimum, mixes in small case letters, upper case letters and numbers
- Periodically changing your password (e.g., at least every 90 days)
- Safeguarding your user name and password information
- Having current anti-malware and anti-virus software
- Making sure you have a firewall in place when conducting your financial transactions
- Logging off the system when you’re done conducting business (don’t just close the page or “X” out of the system)
- Monitoring your account activity on a regular basis
In addition, we may require owners of commercial accounts to perform their own risk assessments and controls evaluations. For example:
- Make a list of the risks related to online transactions that your business faces including
- Passwords being written down and left out in the open
- The use of old or inadequate passwords
- The possibility of internal fraud or theft
- Delays in terminating the rights of former employees
- The lack of dual control or other checks and balances over individual access to online transaction capabilities
- An evaluation of controls your business uses may include
- Using password protected software to house passwords in
- Conducting employee background checks
- Initiating a policy and process to terminate access for former employees
- Segregating duties among two or more people so no one person has too much access or control
- Conducting internal or third party audits of controls
- Using firewalls to protect from outside intrusion or hackers
Federal regulations provide consumers with some protections for electronic fund transfers. These regulations generally apply to accounts with Internet access. For example, these federal laws establish limits on a consumer’s liability for unauthorized electronic fund transfers. They also provide specific steps you need to take to help resolve an error with your account. Note, however, that in order to take advantage of these protections, you must act in a timely manner. Make sure you notify us immediately if you believe your access information has been stolen or compromised. Also, review your account activity and periodic statement and promptly report any errors or unauthorized transactions. See the Electronic Fund Transfer disclosures that were provided at account opening for more information on these types of protections. These disclosures are also available online (or ask us and we will gladly provide you with a copy).
If you become aware of suspicious account activity, you should immediately contact the authorities and contact us at the number listed below.
Tips to avoid phishing, spyware and malware
- Do not open email from unknown sources. Be suspicious of emails purporting to be from a financial institution, government department, or other agency requesting account information, account verification, or banking access credentials such as usernames, passwords, PIN codes, and similar information. Opening file attachments or clicking on Web links in suspicious emails could expose your system to malicious code that could hijack your computer.
- Never respond to a suspicious email or click on any hyperlink embedded in a suspicious email. Call the purported source if you are unsure who sent an email.
- If an email claiming to be from your financial organization seems suspicious, checking with your financial organization may be appropriate.
- Install anti-virus and spyware detection software on all computer systems. Free software may not provide protection against the latest threats compared with an industry standard product.
- Update all of your computers regularly with the latest versions and patches of both anti-virus and anti-spyware software.
- Ensure computers are patched regularly, particularly operating systems and key applications.
- Install a dedicated, actively managed firewall, especially if using a broadband or dedicated connection to the Internet, such as DSL or cable. A firewall limits the potential for unauthorized access to your network and computers.
- Check your settings and select, at least, a medium level of security for your browser.
- Clear the browser cache before starting any Consumer eBanking session to eliminate copies of web pages that have been stored on the hard drive. How the cache is cleared depends on the browser and version you are using. This function is generally found in the browser's preferences menu.
- Be advised that you will never be presented with a maintenance page after entering login credentials. Legitimate maintenance pages are displayed when first reaching the URL and before entering login credentials.
- Consumer eBanking will never display pop-up messages indicating that you cannot use your current browser.
- Consumer eBanking error messages will never include an amount of time to wait before trying to login again.
- Be advised that repeatedly being asked to enter your user ID or password are signs of potentially harmful activity.
- Being asked challenge questions if your computer was previously registered is a sign of potentially harmful activity.