According to the Federal Trade Commission's website, approximately nine million Americans are a
victim of identity theft each year. It is very possible that someone you know has been a victim.
Basically, identity theft occurs when someone you know or don't know uses your personal
identification information such as your name, Social Security number or your credit card number
without your permission to commit a fraud or a financial crime. Such crimes could involve an
unauthorized purchase using your credit card; taking out a mortgage or other type of loan in your
name; or establishing a cell phone account in your name. Besides the financial loss that could occur,
some victims of identity theft may lose out on a job opportunity or are denied loans for new cars,
education or buying a home. Identity thieves will steal your personal information by using any one
of a variety of methods. See below how an ounce of prevention could possibly prevent these
methods from being used to steal your personal information:
The identity thieves will search your mailbox, your trash can, a dumpster or a trash bin for any
credit card solicitations, credit card or bank statements, copies of your checks or any other
type of record that contains your name and personal information.
Shred all credit card solicitations, ATM receipts and other financial documents before discarding.
Report lost or stolen checks immediately. Never leave outgoing mail in your mailbox.
This is a high-tech scam that uses spam or pop-up web messages to deceive you into disclosing
your personal information. The Phishers (pronounced fishers) send an e-mail or pop-up message
that claims to be from a business or organization that you deal with, example: a government
agency, your bank, a retailer, etc. The message usually says that you need to "update" or "validate"
your account information, directing you to a website that looks legitimate, but isn't.
If you get an e-mail or a pop-up message that asks for personal or financial information, do not
reply or click on the link in the message. Remember, that legitimate companies do not ask
for this information via e-mail. Just delete the message. If you have concerns that something
may be wrong with your account, you can use a phone number or e-mail address that you
know to be genuine.
This became a federal crime in 1999. The identity thief calls, claiming to work for your bank,
asking for your account number to verify information. It's also possible the identity thief will
call your bank posing as you, using information stolen from your mailbox or online. With the
stolen information, the identity thief can take over your account, open accounts at other
institutions, and move funds out of your account.
You should monitor your regular credit card and bank statements to ensure they arrive safely.
Do not give any bank account information or your Social Security number over the phone
unless you initiated the call.
The primary victims are ISPs (Internet Service Providers) that are attacked by hackers.
The "pharmers" then lay in wait for the ISP customers' passwords and account numbers. Identity
thieves redirect a consumer to an imposter web page (even when the individual types the correct
address into his browser) by changing - or "poisoning" - some of the address information ISPs
store. From there, they use the same technique as Phishers.
Check with your ISP and ask if they are protected against DNS cache poisoning. Also, the regular
encryption tools in your browser will usually spot frauds.
These are the little wireless networks that pretend to offer Wi-Fi connections to the Internet like
those available at some coffee shops, hotels and conferences. On a laptop screen, an evil-twin
Wi-Fi hotspot can look identical to one of the tens of thousands of legitimate public networks that
consumers log onto every day. Sometimes consumers copy the sign-in page. That's just a front,
and scammers who set up the connections attempt to capture any passwords or credit card
numbers from consumers using the link.
It's recommended that you turn off your Wi-Fi card when using your laptop offline in public.
When you are using it, keep up-to-date protection software that automatically checks a
Wi-Fi network's digital ID certificate. If you believe you are a victim identity theft, please see any
of one our branches for a free information booklet titled "Taking Charge, What To Do If Your
Identity Is Stolen". This booklet is written by the Federal Trade Commission and provides a
tremendous amount of useful information. These booklets are available in English or in Spanish.
How to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft, Online Fraud
and Telephone Fraud
Never provide personal or financial information (i.e. social security numbers, account
numbers, etc.) to unsolicited e-mail, phone or pop-up website requests.
Type website addresses into internet browsers instead of clicking on links in e-mails.
Change passwords and PINs every 30 to 60 days.
Keep anti-virus software on your computers up to date.
Review your credit reports annually, and report and correct mistakes.
The three major credit bureaus are:
Do not leave ATM, debit card or credit card receipts in public trash cans. These items
should be torn up or shredded if you no longer need them.
If a monthly bank statement or bill is missing, contact the service provider immediately.
It's possible someone may have changed your mailing address.
Only carry credit cards you need and never carry your social security card, passport or birth
certificate unless you need it that day.
Don't write PIN numbers on ATM cards.
Don't write your social security number or credit card number on checks.
Eaton National Bank does not send e-mails or make telephone calls soliciting customers or requesting
11 Habits of Check-Fraud Free Banking Customers
Never respond to unsolicited requests for your checking account, Social Security number
or other financial information.
Safeguard checks at home and on your person: never leave them in your car or your
Shred unused checks before disposal, even if they are from a closed account.
Destroy convenience checks, such as those that allow cash advances on credit cards,
Never have your Social Security or drivers' license number preprinted on your checks.
When mailing checks, use a security or heavy envelope or wrap checks in paper to conceal
them from view.
Notify Eaton National Bank and the U.S. Postal Service authorities if newly ordered checks
or routine bank statements don't arrive in a timely manner.
Know how many checks you ordered; verify your order and the accuracy of the information
on your checks.
Immediately notify Eaton National Bank and file a police report if personal checks, or any
checks payable to you, are stolen, and then close compromised accounts.
Check your balance frequently (you can safely do this online here) and promptly review and
reconcile checking account statements for accuracy and fraud.
Consider shopping elsewhere if a merchant requires your Social Security number to
make a purchase.
Source: America's Community Bankers
Be aware of your surroundings, especially between dusk and dawn. If you notice anything
suspicious, a security light out, someone loitering nearby, consider coming back later or leave
the area and use another ATM.
If using the ATM at night, take someone with you.
- Park in a well-lit area as close as possible to the ATM.
Limit your time at the ATM. Have your card out and ready as you approach the ATM.
At a drive-through ATM, be sure your vehicle's doors are locked and the passenger windows
are rolled up.
If you withdraw cash, put it away promptly; count it later, in private.
Put your ATM card and receipt away promptly; never leave your receipt at the ATM.
Keep your PIN secret. Don't write it down and don't share it with anyone. Your PIN provides
access to your account.
By using your hand or your body, shield the keypad when entering your PIN to keep it from
Avoid being too regular in your ATM use. Don't repeatedly visit the same machine at the same
time, the same day of the week.
Be on the lookout for ATM "skimming". ATM skimming is a crime where thieves attach a device
to an ATM to capture your card information. Skimming devices can include a small magnetic
head used to capture your account information, and a small camera or mirror to view the keypad
when you enter your PIN. (See "skimming" preventatives below.)
Do not use a drive-through ATM unless you are in a vehicle.
Notify us immediately of the loss of your card or PIN.
What you can do to prevent criminals from obtaining account information through skimming while
you use an ATM:
Get familiar with the ATMs you use. Keep your eye on the bank card slots, PIN keypads
and where the envelope/brochure holders are located. Skimming device cameras are
typically mounted on these objects.
Stick with ATMs located at banks. It may be better to use an ATM at a bank location
rather than a stand-alone ATM. The bank machines are more closely monitored, and less
likely to have a skimming device go undetected.
Watch out for mirrors. Look for a mirror that seems out of place. Mirrors are required
by law to be installed at ATMs so you can spot someone looking over your shoulder. But an
extra mirror could be an attempt to steal your PIN, usually be a thief who's standing close by.
Check the card slot. Look for a false slot attached to the original card slot. It may stick
out farther or look newer than the machine. If it looks suspicious, do not use the ATM.
Report it. If something seems strange or suspicious at an ATM location, report it to
Eaton National Bank. Do not remove any suspected skimming device.
Customer Identification Program
Important Information About Procedures for Opening a New Account
To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, Federal law
requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify and record information that identifies each person
who opens an account.
What this means for you
When you open an account, we will ask for your
Date of Birth
and other information that will allow us to identify you
We will also ask to see your
or other identifying documents
Your patience and cooperation during the account opening process is greatly appreciated.