image of the community first bank location
Identity theft involves acquiring key pieces of your identifiable information, such as your name, address, date of birth, social security number, or mother’s maiden name in order to commit fraud. With this information, a thief can do such things as take over your financial accounts, open new bank accounts, purchase automobiles, apply for loans, credit cards, and social security benefits, rent apartments, and establish services with utility and phone companies.
When consumers receive emails requesting updated billing or personal information that seems legitimate, often it isn’t. Some emails are designed to trick you into revealing your private information, such as your social security number, bank account number, or debit card number. This practice is known as “phishing”.
To make these emails seem more realistic, the “phisher” often disguises himself under the logo of a known company or under the name of a trusted source such as the FDIC, a bank or an internet service provider.
If you get an email that warns you one of your accounts will be shut down unless you reconfirm your billing information, do not reply or click on the link in the email. Instead report the suspicious activity to the company where you maintain the account and the Federal Trade Commission immediately at 1-877-ID-THEFT.
Next, review and verify credit card and bank statements as soon as you receive them. Report any suspicious activity through the Federal Trade Commission website www.consumer.gov or call 1-877-ID-THEFT. Internet fraud complaints can be filed with the FBI.
Equifax 1-800-525-6285 www.equifax.com
Experian 1-888-397-3742 www.experian.com
TransUnion 1-800-680-7289 www.tuc.com
1. Immediately contact your bank and credit card providers by calling the phone number listed on your statements.
2. Contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by one of the following methods:
3. Contact the fraud division of the three major credit reporting agencies and request that a “fraud alert” be placed in your file. Ask that no new credit be granted without your approval. Request a copy of your credit report.
Fraud Division of Major Credit Reporting Agencies
4. Cancel all accounts that have fraudulent activity or are at risk.
5. Contact your local law enforcement agency.
6. If your mail has been stolen, contact the U.S. Postal Service.
7. Keep detailed records of all events once you ascertain that your identity has been stolen. Include names, telephone numbers, and the date and time you made contact with individuals or companies requesting assistance in recovering your good name.
Some customers may receive email messages that appear to be from Community First Bank that request confidential personal information. These email messages are disguised to look like a Community First Bank message, but are not.
Community First Bank does not solicit confidential customer information this way. These messages are fraudulent and they are not from the bank. If you happen to get one, do not respond to it.
If you have already responded to one of these messages, or have logged on to a site that appeared to be Community First Bank’s online site after following a link in one of these, please call the bank immediately at 1-618-244-3000.
Con artists and scams are an unpleasant fact of life, and to criminals the Internet is just another way to take advantage of the unsuspecting. While electronic fraud has become a real problem in recent years, a little knowledge is all you need to protect yourself and your identity.
Electronic fraud is just like any other type of fraud, it’s a criminal pretending to be someone they’re not. In the electronic world, this can mean emails with forged addresses or websites that are designed to resemble legitimate businesses. These false solicitations always have one thing in common, they ask you to provide personal information, often by asking you to “update your account information” by providing social security numbers, credit card numbers, or other information. Once they have this information, it is easy for an experienced criminal to create a false identity for himself, using your name, and your credit.
While the technology behind these crimes is complex, preventing them is easy. Never give out sensitive personal information online unless you’re absolutely certain you can trust the site, and never send out sensitive information in an email.
All electronic contact with Community First Bank, where we request sensitive account information, is done either from our SecureMessage contact site or inside the secure message feature of Community First Bank’s Online Banking. If you are uncomfortable with transmitting any financial data online you always have the option to contact us by phone or visit your local Community First Bank.
Keep these simple rules in mind and you will be better equipped to protect yourself.
You can read more about electronic fraud or report suspicious email activity at the Federal Trade Commission website www.consumer.gov.
Community First Bank is committed to protecting the security of our customer’s personal information, including when it is transmitted online. Therefore, Community First’s online banking and other online services utilize advanced internet security technology to protect your personal financial information against unauthorized access. We will never request personal information via e-mail or pop-up windows. Even with the bank’s robust security system in place, there are additional steps you can take to further protect your financial and personal information.
To access certain online services, you have been assigned a unique user ID and password that is for your use only. Your user ID and password are designed to protect you by confirming your identity to the computer network systems. To prevent unauthorized access to your accounts, it is very important to keep your user ID and password confidential.
Here are some steps to take to protect your user ID and password:
The objective when creating a strong password is to make it as difficult as possible for anyone to make an educated guess about what you have selected, yet, it should be developed in a manner that makes it simple to remember without writing it down.
Words to avoid when creating passwords:
Do not use your (or any family member’s) name, nickname, or initials in any form (forwards or backwards spelling).
Do not use other information that can be easily obtained about you. This includes birth dates, telephone numbers, license plate numbers, social security numbers, street addresses, or the brand of automobile you drive, etc.
Do not use all the same character (i.e. 444444) or consecutive keys on a keyboard (i.e. QWERTY).
Do not use words that would appear in a dictionary (English or other), as they can be easily compromised by password cracking programs that use electronic dictionaries.
Develop a method of creating passwords that makes it easier for you to remember. You want to avoid writing it down.
You can use a line in a favorite song, poem, or movie and select the first letter of each word to create your password. Also include at least one number. For example, “The early bird catches the worm” becomes the password 1TEBCTW.
Use a word that you can easily remember, but remove the vowels and replace them with numbers. For example, the word Summer becomes the password S2MM3R.
Always log off the system after you have completed your business. As an added level of protection, Community First Bank’s online banking has a timeout feature that automatically terminates your session after an extended period of inactivity.
For additional protection, access to Community First Bank’s online banking will be denied or locked after three unsuccessful login attempts.
Encryption is the process where information is transformed or coded into a form that is unreadable to anyone except those who possess the decryption key. This process prohibits unauthorized individuals from intercepting and viewing the information and is also referred to as a “secure session”.
You can tell your online session with Community First Bank is secure through the following:
Firewalls are an additional security mechanism the bank uses to protect your account information. A firewall acts as a barrier between the Internet and the bank’s internal network system, permitting only specific traffic to pass in and out.
Email transmitted across the Internet is normally not protected and may be intercepted and viewed by others. You should, therefore, refrain from sending any confidential or private information via email to Community First Bank. We will not ask you to send confidential information to us via email, such as your user ID, password, account numbers or social security number.
Community First Bank utilizes the most up-to-date technology to protect our internal systems and your personal financial information from computer viruses. Malicious viruses can sometimes be used to gain access to your personal computer. For protection of your personal system, Community First recommends you implement the following:
Malware is an attempt to trick you by popping up fraudulent login screens in order to acquire sensitive data such as your username, password, challenge questions or other information. A new version of malware targets online banking customers and primarily uses false login windows, or anything that looks different on a login window. These could be signs that your computer has been affected by malware. As a general precaution, it is best to close all other browser sessions and tabs before logging into a banking session.
1. What is malware?
Malware is a general term that refers to any kind of computer software designed to infiltrate or damage a computer system without the owner’s knowledge or consent. The word Malware is derived from the words malicious and software. Malware includes computer viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spyware and many other malicious and unwanted software types.
2. How does malware occur?
Malware can infect your computer through many ways, including pop-up messages that ask you to download things, infected websites, links in web pages or emails, and many other methods that can sometimes be invisible to you. Malware is often used in conjunction with a phishing scam.
3. What are the impacts of malware?
Malware, at a minimum, is a nuisance, sometimes displaying unwanted advertising or using your computer to send spam. At its worst, malware has the potential to steal personal and financial information ranging from browsing habits to email address lists to online banking passwords and even identity theft.
4. How can I protect my computer from malware?
While there is no single fool-proof method, keeping your anti-virus software up to date and running and your operating systems and applications updated with the latest patches from the manufacturers will certainly help. Other common suggestions include exercising extreme caution with email links and attachments, using firewalls to protect information on your personal computer, and watching for login windows or messages that appear strange or different which could be a sign that your computer has been affected with malware.
5. What should I do if I am affected?
First and foremost, you should contact your anti-virus software support line for assistance. Take the steps as recommended by them and always remain vigilant to the risks malware, phishing and other suspicious activities can create.