Cyber threats are real — learn more about the risks they pose and tips to keep your identity and personal information safe when banking online.
Safeguarding Your Information
In today's high tech world, we are able to do things more quickly and conveniently electronically whether it is to send a letter via email, pay bills or even go shopping online. With this increase in speed and convenience also comes increased risk. Every day, unscrupulous individuals are busy developing new scams targeting the unsuspecting public. At Pelican State Credit Union, the security of member information is a priority. We are strongly committed to the safety and confidentiality of your records. One of the best ways to avoid fraud is to become an educated consumer and we would like to help you in this endeavor. Please take a moment to read this important information on ways to try and stay safe when conducting business online.
- Equifax Data Breach
On Thursday, September 8, 2017, Equifax, one of the leading credit reporting bureaus, disclosed that they discovered a data breach on July 29 that may potentially impact up to 143 million consumers in the United Sates—44% of the U.S. Population.
According to the company, hackers accessed data between May and July of 2017 through a vulnerability in a web application. The hackers gained access to:
- Social Security numbers
- Birth dates
- Some driver’s license numbers
- Credit card numbers
- Dispute documents that include personal identifying data
Here's what we're doing to protect you: When you call us, we ask a couple of questions to confirm your identity. Moving forward, we will be asking you to provide a little more information. Your membership is very important to us, and we are doing this to protect your personal, private information from being compromised.
Here's how you can protect yourself: Get familiar with protecting yourself online. Continue to read below to learn everything you need to know about protecting yourself on the internet.
Visit Equifax’s website, www.equifaxsecurity2017.com, to read more about the incident. They are also offering complimentary identity theft protection for one year after you check if you’re impacted.
You can put a security freeze on your credit report to restrict lenders from accessing it. The freeze makes it more difficult for people trying to steal your information to open accounts or apply for loans in your name since most lenders pull an individual’s credit report before giving loan approval. A freeze does not affect your credit score, and it is also able to be lifted if you want to apply for credit yourself. If you would like to place a freeze on your credit report, please contact each of the nationwide credit reporting bureaus:
If you have questions about your credit or would like more information on preventing or dealing with identity theft, our team of Nationally Certified Credit Counselors are here to help! Please call 1-800-351-4877 to speak to a credit counselor or click here to send them a message.
What to Expect From Pelican State Credit Union
- Pelican will NEVER call, email or contact you to ask for your user name, password or other online banking credentials.
- Pelican will NEVER contact you to ask for your credit or debit card number, PIN or 3-digit security code.
- All of your transactions are monitored 24/7, and you will be notified about any suspicious activity for verification.
- Card controls are available through our mobile app, which allows you to freeze and unfreeze your card when not in use.
We’re here for you! Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions by visiting a branch near you, contacting us using our online chat or by calling 1-800-351-4877.
- Video Scam Targets Consumers and Routing Numbers
Consumers are falling victim to a scam promoted via online videos claiming bills can be paid online using routing numbers belonging to a Federal Reserve Bank (FRB) or other financial institutions including credit unions. The scam suggests electronic payments will be generated through the ACH network using FRB accounts touted as “secret accounts” or “Social Security trust accounts” in exchange for personal information like Social Security Numbers. Click here to continue reading...
- Text Phishing Scam
Many local credit union members are reporting that they are receiving text messages from 888-877-8880. This fraudulent text prompts the reader to unblock their debit card by calling 800-460-9518, where an automated system prompts them to enter the last four digits of their card, along with their ATM PIN and zip code.
Pelican will never ask you to provide your card number and PIN via phone, text or email. Our only text alerts will ask you to verify specific transactions. If you or someone you know has received a text or phone call like this, please report it your financial institution immediately. If you are ever in doubt, please reach out to your financial institution before providing any personal information. We are always more than happy to assist you to find out if there is a problem with your card or account!
- How to Keep Yourself Safe in Cyberspace
An important part of online safety is knowledge. The more you know, the safer you'll be. Here are some great tips on how to stay safe in cyberspace:
1. Set good passwords. A good password is a long combination of upper and lower case letters and numbers and one that is not easily guessed. Change your password frequently. Don't write it down or share it with others.
2. Don't reveal personal information via email. Emails and text messages can be masked to look like they are coming from a trusted sender when they are actually from someone else. Play it safe, do not send your personal information such as account numbers, social security numbers, passwords etc. via email or texting.
3. Don't download that file! Opening files attached to emails can be dangerous especially when they are from someone you don't know as they can allow harmful malware or viruses to be downloaded onto your computer. Make sure you have a good antivirus program on your computer that is up-to-date.
4. Links aren't always what they seem. Never log in from a link that is embedded in an email message. Criminals can use fake email addresses and make fake web pages that mimic the page you would expect. To avoid falling into their trap, type in the URL address directly and then log in.
5. Websites aren't always what they seem. Be aware that if you navigate to a website from a link you don't type, you may end up at a site that looks like the correct one, when in fact it's not. Take time to verify that the webpage you're visiting matches exactly with the URL that you'd expect.
6. Logoff from sites when you are done. When you are ready to leave a site you have logged in to, logoff rather than just closing the page.
7. Monitor account activity. Monitor your account activity regularly either online or by reviewing your monthly statements and report any unauthorized transactions right away.
8. Assess your risk. We recommend periodically assessing your online banking risk and put into place increased security controls where weaknesses are found; particularly for members with business accounts. Some items to consider when assessing your online banking risk are:
- Who has access to your online business accounts?
- How and where are user names and passwords stored?
- How strong are your passwords and how often are they changed? Are they changed before or immediately after terminating an employee who had access to them?
- Do you have dual controls or other checks and balances with respect to access to online banking transactions?
Rights and Responsibilities
With respect to online banking and electronic fund transfers, the Federal government has put in place rights and responsibilities for both you and the credit union. These rights and responsibilities are described in the Account Information Disclosures you received when you opened your account with Pelican State Credit Union. Ultimately, if you notice suspicious account activity or experience security-related events, please contact the credit union immediately at 1-800-351-4877.