Identity Theft and Fraud Protection
Protect Yourself from Identity Theft and Credit/Debit Card Fraud
Protecting your personal and financial information is essential to us. NorthEast Community Bank uses Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology to encrypt your personal information such as user IDs, passwords and account information over the Internet. Your browser will decode any encrypted information we send you.
How to Fight Online Identity Theft
There are a number of basic steps you can take to protect yourself from identity theft, both on the Internet and elsewhere.
1. Never provide personal financial information in response to an unsolicited request, whether over the phone or on the Internet.
2. If you believe the contact may be legitimate, contact the financial institution yourself, using contact information that you have verified.
3. Never provide your User ID or password over the phone or in response to an unsolicited Internet request.
4. Review account statements regularly to ensure all transactions and charges are correct.
5. Never click on the link provided in an email you believe is fraudulent, as it may contain a virus that could contaminate your computer.
6. Do not be intimidated by an e-mail or caller who suggests dire consequences if you do not immediately provide or verify financial information.
7. If you believe the contact is legitimate, go to the company’s Web site. Do this by typing in the site address directly, or using a page you have previously bookmarked. DO NOT use the link provided in the email. It may take you to a “pharming” site; a bogus site that mimics a legitimate one in order to obtain personal information such as passwords, account numbers, etc.
In addition to pharming, online identity thieves use other methods to obtain your personal information, including:
Phishing makes use of phony emails and Web sites that mimic financial institutions, government agencies or other organizations to “fish” for your personal financial information. Phishing thieves want your account numbers, user IDs, passwords, Social Security numbers, and any other confidential information they can use to deplete your deposit accounts, or run up bills on your credit cards.
Skimming involves the thieves using a special storage device to steal credit/debit card numbers – including PIN numbers – when processing your card.
Worst case, you could find yourself a victim of identity theft. Successful identity thieves can obtain loans, credit cards and even driver’s licenses and Social Security numbers in your name. They can do damage to your credit history and reputation that can take years to unravel. Understanding how to protect yourself from the many forms of online identity theft can help you stop this crime.
External Links with Important Information About Identity Theft and Fraud
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC):
Internet pirates are trying to steal your personal information. Learn how the FDIC recommends you protect yourself.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Identity Theft:
Immediate steps to take if you feel your identity has been compromised.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on credit card fraud:
How to protect yourself against credit card fraud, and what to do if you believe it's happened to you.
Government and Technology Industry:
How to avoid scams, protect your kids online, secure your computer--and be smart.
Social Security Fraud Reporting:
Use this online form to report allegations of fraud, waste, and abuse concerning SSA programs and operations.
US Postal Inspectors Mail Fraud Information:
U.S. Postal Inspectors investigate any crime in which the U.S. Mail is used to further a scheme, whether it originated in the mail, by telephone, or on the Internet.
National Consumers League (runs National Fraud Information Center and Internet Fraud Watch):
All about phishing; how it works, how to protect yourself, and where to go for help.
VISA provides your account with multiple layers of security protection. Here's what you need to know to avoid becoming a victim.
If You Become a Victim of Identity Theft, Act Immediately
Source: Various regulatory agencies, including the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, FDIC, NCUA, and OCC.
- Alert NorthEast Community Bank immediately.
- Contact the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) to place fraud alerts on your credit files.
- Monitor your credit files and account statements closely.
- Report suspicious e-mails, calls or other activity to the Federal Trade Commission online at www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft/, or call 1-877-IDTHEFT.
For more about how to protect yourself from identity theft and fraud, see these helpful videos:
Phishing: Don't take the bait!
Identity Theft: Protect Yourself!
Internet Fraud: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is
Social Media: Be Careful Who You Trust
Play it Safe with Portable Devices