Technology is getting more advanced every day and unfortunately, so are scammers and hackers. We urge you to be proactive and take steps to protect your personal information and data. Fraudulent emails, commonly referred to as “phishing” or “spoofing” are becoming more frequent and may appear legitimate by incorporating things such as company brands, colors, or other legal disclosures. Texas Traditions Bank will never email, call or text to request your online banking passwords or information. Stay alert and take precautions before giving out any personal information. Below are some tips to keep your information safe.
- Keep your personal information secure by not giving out personal information online, through the phone, or through the mail unless you initiated the contact and know exactly who you are dealing with.
- Avoid putting your driver's license number or Social Security number on your checks.
- Before discarding personal or financial information, make sure to shred the documents first.
- Make sure to password protect your personal computer and mobile device.
- Use multi-factor authentication, when possible, this requires additional credentials to log into your account and makes it harder for scammers to log into your account if they do obtain your username and password.
- Avoid using automatic log-in features that save your username or password for online banking.
- Monitor your account regularly for unauthorized charges and suspicious activity. Sign up for email/text alerts to stay well informed of your account activity.
- Set up alerts on your account through Online Banking to monitor specific account activity.
- Secure your accounts by using strong passwords that have a combination of upper & lower case letters, numbers and special characters (the longer the password, the better). Avoid using common words or phrases, names, birth dates, etc.
- Update your password regularly and do not share your password with anyone (not even the bank).
- Do not use the same password for all your accounts.
- Avoid selecting security questions that have answers with information available to the public (mother’s maiden name, birthplace, zip code) or questions that have limited number of responses that can easily be guessed (favorite color).
- Install a dedicated firewall and virus/malware protection on all computers.
- Make sure you update your software regularly. This ensures that critical patches and protections against security threats are installed.
- Only visit secure websites (make sure that the web address starts with “https”, not “http”).
- Never click on links in unsolicited emails. Check the sender’s email address for any misspellings. You can detect a deceptive link by hovering over the link with your cursor. This will display the actual destination of the link either in a pop-up, in the lower left of your status bar, or other location depending on your email client. Make sure the actual destination matches the address on the link. Be suspicious of links containing numbers in place of letters, slight misspellings, or abbreviations.
- Be cautious of emails that create a false sense of urgency (i.e. “Act Now”, “Response Required”).
- Avoid using public wireless connections.
- Back up your data frequently (at least once a week) to ensure that you will still have important data (files, documents, and photos) in case your device crashes or you are hacked.
- Make sure to remove all personal information from all devices (cell phones, computers, flash drives) before disposing, selling, or recycling them.
- Contact Texas Traditions Bank immediately if you see any unusual activity.
Protecting Your Business from Fraud
In addition to taking all the precautions listed above, there are additional precautions you should take if you are a business owner.
- Always use dual control when initiating ACH and wire transfers.
- Reconcile your accounts daily.