Protect yourself with this fraud and data breach information.
Equifax Data Breach
143 million Americans may have been affected by the latest data breach as reported by Equifax. Data breaches have become our new norm, it seems. According to the ID Theft Center, there have been 7,873 breaches since 2005, exposing 907,293,703 records.
At this time, it appears there were just over 200,000 credit cards among the 143 million records potentially compromised. Equifax has indicated that debit cards were not exposed — therefore criminals are unlikely to have the capability to withdraw funds from a checking account.
The most pressing and immediate threat with this breach is identity theft, and the best thing you can do right now is follow these identity protection tips:
- Use CardNav by CO-OP on your First Community debit card to receive real-time, in-app alerts any time your card is used, letting you know immediately if there are unauthorized purchases on your card.
- Review your credit report. Consumers are allowed one free copy every 12 months. Stagger your requests between the three credit bureaus requesting one every three months instead of all at the same time
- Don't respond to email, text or telephone calls asking for personal or financial information
- Be vigilant with your bank and credit card accounts by frequently reviewing account activity and immediately reporting unauthorized transactions
- If fraud has occurred on your account, place fraud alert with credit bureaus
- Be prepared to file your taxes early
For more information, visit Stop the Data Breaches.
Incidents of skimming devices being installed on ATM machines are on the rise in our area. The FBI, U.S. Secret Service and/or local law enforcement are always involved in ATM skimming investigations. Law enforcement agencies are looking into ways to combat skimming, including altering the design of ATMs and modifying the magnetic stripe technology. Your best protection however is your own vigilance.
Following are some tips to help you avoid becoming a skimming victim:
- Call the credit union (800-767-8880) immediately if you believe there is an actual or a potential problem with your card.
- Keep your PIN safe. Don't give it to anyone. Cover the pin pad while entering your PIN with your other hand if possible.
- Watch out for people who try to "help" you at an ATM.
- Look at the ATM before using it. If it doesn't look right, don't use it. Examples include loose card reader, card doesn't insert smoothly, or you see scratches, sticky tape residue or any type of liquid or gel. Newer ATMs have a flashing or steady light at the card slot. If it's obscured, suspect tampering.
- If an ATM has any unusual signage, don't use it.
- If your card is not returned after the transaction has been completed--or after you press Cancel--immediately contact the credit union.
Always check your statements to be sure there are no unusual withdrawals. Better yet, download our CardNav app and get messages every time a transaction posts to your account.
Be advised of a new scam. No secret bank accounts to pay your bills. See additional information.
Debit Card Fraud Detection and Notification System
As part of our continuing effort to bring the best technology and service to our members, we at First Community are upgrading our Fraud Detection and Notification System. The new system will provide more immediate attention to notify our members faster when fraud is suspected. The notification portion of the system includes a state-of-the-art automated assistant to help our members review transactions and confirm their spending activity on debit cards.
If you receive a notification call from our automated assistant, whom we have nick-named Jill, please work with her to answer questions regarding recent card activity. Please also be aware that our Card Member Security team that provides fraud alert management is available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week should you need assistance from a live agent.
If suspicious transactions are identified as fraudulent, calls will be transferred to our outstanding member support team at Card Member Security to help you take the necessary precautions to protect your cards and related accounts. If the recent activity is legitimate, members will be able to close the case with the phone attendant using their touch-tone phone.