Online Banking has added a convenience factor to conducting your business with Alabama One Credit Union. However, with that convenience comes the threat of fraud. Together with Alabama One Credit Union, you can take steps to protect your financial identity. A best practice to keeping your accounts safe is to be informed.
Alabama One Credit Union will never initiate contact with its members to obtain or verify any account or personal information. Account and personal information includes account number, credit or debit card number, social security number, and/or online banking credentials. If you receive any request for this information, disconnect the call and immediately call the Credit Union at 205-759-1595 or 800-225-0110, or e-mail us at email@example.com to report the activity.
There are times that may require the Credit Union to contact you unsolicited. If you have a pending loan application, the Credit Union may contact you to obtain additional information to process the application. If the Credit Union suspects fraudulent activity on your Alabama One Credit Union credit or debit card(s), you may be contacted by an employee of Alabama One Credit Union or third party representing the Credit Union to validate the transaction.
Debit and Credit Card Fraud
Debit and credit card fraud takes place every day in a variety of ways. While you can’t always prevent fraud from happening, you can make it tougher for someone to get your card information. A few best practices can help you keep your cards safe.
Fraud protection practices include:
- Don’t provide your card number to anyone over the phone unless you made the call and you know the company to be reputable.
- Keep customer service phone numbers from the back of your credit or debit card on a list that is separate from your purse or wallet in the event of theft.
- Notify your card issuer of travel dates and destinations. If your card gets used in an unusual destination, the transaction may be declined.
- Save your receipts to compare with your statement.
- Report any questionable charges to your card issuer immediately.
Online Banking Security
In Online Banking, security is a primary concern just as it is with traditional banking methods. At Alabama One Credit Union, our goal is to make sure that your information is transmitted safely and securely. Therefore, we use the latest Internet security standards such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) that use a 128 bit encryption algorithm.
SSL provides the means for web browsers, such as Internet Explorer or Firefox, to establish a private connection with a web server. This private connection is established when your security-capable browser connects to a secure web page on the Internet.
When this connection is established, both the browser and the server are on a “private channel” where messages going in either direction are encrypted. You are assured that all data exchanged with the server is encrypted and/or unaltered.
Identity theft involves the fraudulent acquisition and use of a person’s identifying information, usually for financial gain. Identity thieves may use your information to repeatedly commit fraud which may include opening new accounts, purchasing automobiles, applying for loans, credit cards, and social security benefits, and/or renting apartments.
You can protect yourself by doing the following:
- Report lost or stolen debit cards, credit cards, or checks immediately.
- Shred all documents containing personal information.
- Don’t respond to e-mail, text, or phone messages that ask for personal information.
- Review your credit reports.
If you suspect you have become a victim of identity theft, you should immediately act to reduce any further damage.
- Contact one of the credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit report. You may also consider a credit freeze.
- Equifax – 1-800-525-6285
- Experian – 1-888-397-3742
- Transunion – 1-800-680-7289
- Order a credit report from each of the three agencies. Placing a fraud alert on your credit report entitles you to a free credit report from each agency.
- Create an Identity Theft Report by submitting a complaint about the theft to the Federal Trade Commission and filing a police report.
- Federal Trade Commission – 1-877-438-4338
Alabama One Credit Union recommends you check your credit report at least annually even if you don’t suspect identity theft. In 2012, the Federal Trade Commission conducted a study and it found that 5% of consumers had errors on their credit reports that could result in less favorable terms for loans. Therefore, it is important to review your credit report just as you would a bank statement or credit card bill.
You may obtain your free credit report from each credit bureau at Annual Credit Report once every 12 months.
Social engineering relies heavily on human interaction. It involves tricking people into breaking normal security procedures and providing confidential information. Social engineers exploit a person’s natural inclination to trust instead of attempting to hack your software. Examples of social engineering techniques include the following:
- Baiting – Baiting is when an attacker leaves a malware-infected physical device, such as aUSB flash drive in a place it is sure to be found. The finder then picks up the device and loads it onto his or her computer, unintentionally installing the malware.
- Phishing – Phishing is when a malicious party sends a fraudulent e-mail disguised as a legitimate email, often purporting to be from a trusted source. The message is meant to trick the recipient into sharing personal or financial information or clicking on a link that installs malware.
- Vishing – Vishingis the act of using the telephone in an attempt to scam the user into surrendering private information that will be used for identity theft. The scammer usually pretends to be a legitimate business, and tricks the victim into thinking he or she will profit.
- Smishing – Smishing attempts to direct the text message recipient to visit a website or call a phone number, at which point the person being scammed is enticed to provide sensitive information such as credit card details or passwords. Smishing websites are also known to attempt to infect the person’s computer withmalware.
- Scareware – Scareware involves tricking the victim into thinking his computer is infected with malware or has inadvertently downloaded illegal content. The attacker then offers the victim a solution that will fix the bogus problem; in reality, the victim is simply tricked into downloading and installing the attacker’s malware.
Regulation E: Electronic Funds Transfers
Regulation E is designed to provide protection from fraudulent and/or unauthorized transactions to consumers making electronic funds transfers. Examples of transactions covered under Regulation E include: point-of-sale (POS) transfers; automated teller machine (ATM) transfers; direct deposit or withdrawal of funds; telephone transfers; transactions resulting from debit card transactions, whether or not initiated through an electronic terminal; and electronic check conversion.
In the event you notice a transaction that you believe could be fraudulent and/or unauthorized, call 205-759-1595 or 800-225-0110, or write to Alabama One Credit Union, 1215 Veterans Memorial Parkway, Tuscaloosa, AL 35404. You must notify the Credit Union within 60 days from the transmittal of the statement on which a fraudulent and/or unauthorized transaction occurs.
For further information, see the Electronic Funds Transfers Disclosure Statement in your Master Account Agreement. If a copy of the Master Account Agreement is needed, call 205-759-1595 or 800-225-0110, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Business and Commercial Accounts
Business and commercial accounts are not covered by Regulation E. Therefore, it is critical that business and commercial members implement sound security practices to reduce the risk of fraud and unauthorized transactions. While business and commercial accounts may not be covered under Regulation E, some protections may still apply to these accounts.
Alabama One Credit Union advises each business and commercial member to perform a risk assessment and evaluate the controls they have in place periodically. The risk assessment should evaluate whether the business and commercial member has implemented sound security practices.
Alabama One Credit Union recommends each business and commercial business member review information and guidelines provided by the Federal Trade Commission in order to ensure a sound security plan is put into place.