Safety and Security - What you can do





 What You Can Do

Woman and man looking at computerYou are our most important partner in creating a safe and secure banking environment. While we can take several precautions to protect your private information, you have the responsibility of protecting yourself and your loved ones from fraud and identity theft. There are several steps you can take to improve your security.


Protect your computer. Spyware, also known as malware, can secretly install on your computer and collect private information. Some programs, known as keystroke loggers, can even track your keystrokes to capture passwords and share them with fraudsters. Invest in anti-virus, anti-spam and anti-spyware software and be sure to keep them up-to-date. Also, make sure you have installed the most recent security patches or updates for the software installed on your computer. If you use a broadband connection, we recommend a personal firewall. Avoid using public, insecure wireless networks or “hot spots” to connect to the Internet and perform sensitive online activities.


As a business owner or manager you are challenged with protecting the business, employees and customers. The following web sites offer tips especially for you:


National Cyber Safety Alliance

Better Business Bureau


Protect your password and PIN. Select passwords and PINs that are easy for you to remember but difficult for someone else to guess. Avoid using family member or pet names, birthdates, and phone numbers. Never write your password or PIN down or share it with anyone. Don’t store passwords or have your computer automatically fill them in – always enter your password yourself. Do not alternate between the same passwords. Do not use the same password for different Web sites.


Protect your security token. Sensative online transactions sometimes require the use of a security token issued to you by your bank. When your token is not in use, store it in a secure location such as a locked drawer or safe. Avoid leaving your token in open view when you are away from your desk. Do not allow anyone physical access to your token, even if you are present. Avoid displaying your token in public or explaining its purpose to people outside your company or department. Immediately report lost or stolen tokens to your bank.

Beware of phishing. Phishing is an online attempt to get information by tricking you into responding to an email or into visiting a fake web site. Always have a healthy skepticism of incoming email – especially those that claim to be your financial institution. Remember, we will never ask you to provide personal information by e-mail or provide links to our web sites via e-mail. Delete suspicious e-mails immediately. If you're being asked to update information via e-mail, go directly to the company's web site by typing the address into your browser or call a known contact number for the company. Never use the link provided in an e-mail from a contact you do not know.

Beware of vishing. Instead of using e-mails to scam their victims, vishers steal information from consumers over the phone -- whether through personal calls or the use of automated dialers. Vishers are skilled in manipulating their victims and making you believe they are who they say they are. Be cautious if you did not initiate the call to the bank -- even if a phone call appears on your Caller ID as someone you trust. Hang up and call your financial institution directly. Do not give out personal information over the phone.

Ask a professional. Spyware, spam, viruses – are you confused by all of the ins and outs of computer security? Don’t ignore the problem. Seek someone who can advise you on the steps you need to take to be safe. And, as your bank, we are always here to answer questions about the safety and security of your accounts and assist you if a problem arises.

Use secure sites for online transactions. When you are ready to make a purchase online make sure the URL in the browser address bar displays "https” instead of “http”, and look for a padlock symbol in the lower right hand corner of your browser.

Shred personal and business documents. Identity theft is a real concern, but you're at greater risk of thieves stealing paper documents from your trash than you are from your online transactions. So, shred any papers containing account numbers, birth dates, and other personal information. Review all account statements carefully and report suspicious activity immediately. If possible, opt to receive electronic statements from your service providers.

Be a smart ATM customer. When using an ATM always be aware of your surroundings – make sure the area is well-lit, and the ATM is not hidden from view. Never leave your car running or leave car doors open. If possible, always visit the ATM with someone. Always have your card out and ready to use, and immediately return it to your wallet, along with your receipt and cash, when you are done. Shield the screen and PIN pad from view if others are waiting in line. If you do not recognize the brands featured on the ATM or believe the ATM has been tampered with, do not use the machine. Some ATMs require you to use a card for access to the enclosure. Do not allow anyone to follow you into the enclosure.

Know your credit. Periodically obtain credit reports from each of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies and have information relating to fraudulent transactions deleted. Under federal law, you are entitled to one free copy of your credit report every twelve months from each of the major credit reporting agencies. You may obtain a free copy of your credit report by visiting or by calling 1-877-FACTACT (1-877-322-8228).