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At Citizens Bank of West Virginia our first priority is protecting your personal information.
While identity theft can happen to anyone, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk. The Federal Trade Commission’s site provides the most up-to-date information on how to deter, detect, and defend against identity theft.
If you think someone is using your personal information to open accounts, file taxes, or make purchases, visit IdentityTheft.gov to report and recover from identity theft.
Take action immediately by following these three steps…
P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, GA 30374-0241
P.O. Box 2002
Allen, TX 75013
Fraud Victim Assistance Division
P.O. Box 6790
Fullerton, CA 92834-6790
Install anti-virus, anti-malware, and anti-spam software
Install a firewall and keep it turned on
Need help with Anti-virus or Firewall software?
Use strong passwords and change them frequently
Erase or destroy your hard drive before discarding your old computer
Private information stored on your computer’s hard drive should be erased or destroyed before you get rid of your computer. First, make a backup copy of any important data you want to save. Then, to erase information permanently, you must either wipe (or “scrub”) your hard drive with special software or physically destroy it. These steps are necessary because your files may be easily recoverable even after you have deleted them or put them in the recycle/empty bins. Learn more about how to safely dispose of old computers and hard drives.
Keep your system current
Change default passwords and network names
Protect Yourself from Social Engineering
Social engineering is the act of tricking someone into disclosing a piece of valuable information such as a username, password, credit card number, or social security number. These attacks take advantage of human vulnerabilities such as emotions, trust, or habits in order to convince individuals to take action such as clicking a fraudulent link, visiting a malicious website, or sending unrecoverable funds to someone (often outside of the country).
Hallmarks of Social Engineering Attacks:
What You Can Do To Protect Yourself:
Social Engineering is on the rise. Tactics will continue to evolve and become more sophisticated. When faced with urgent situations described above, use it as a trigger to stop and think; and when in doubt, ask someone knowledgeable.
Elder Financial Abuse
Elder Financial Abuse is the improper use of an older person’s funds or property. This abuse can be perpetrated by people they know, or people they don’t know and it can happen in many different ways.
Here are some warning signs:
Governments across the globe have created restrictions to help reduce the spread of Coronavirus. These regulations change often and vary by country, region, and city. So knowing exactly what is expected of you can be a challenge. It’s no surprise that the bad guys are taking advantage of this confusion!
Cybercriminals are using text messaging, or short message service (SMS), to pose as a government agency. The message says you have been seen leaving your home multiple times and as a result you are being fined. They urge you to click on their official-looking link to pay this “fine” online. If you click the link, you’ll be taken to a payment page where you can give your credit card details directly to the bad guys!
This tactic is known as “Smishing” (SMS Phishing). Smishing can be even more convincing than email phishing because criminals know how to spoof their phone number to appear as though they’re calling from an official source. Be careful!
Here’s how to stay safe from this smishing attack:
During this storm of COVID-19 phishing scams, the bad guys love posing as your trusted Human Resources department. One recent HR scam started with an overdramatic subject line: “COVID-19 PANDEMIC IS WITHIN, BEWARE! WARNING!!!” In a mess of run-on sentences, the email claims that some of your co-workers have tested positive for Coronavirus. Keeping with the HR theme, they ask that you do not discriminate against these people and they suggest that “everyone should rather cease panic”.
The email does not identify anyone by name, but asks you to download an attached photo of the infected employees. This attack targets your natural curiosity. Who could it be? Wasn’t Bill coughing last week? I just have to know! If you were to download the attachment, you would find that it is actually a piece of malicious software designed to quietly steal data through your organization’s network. Don’t be fooled!
Remember these tips:
As the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, the bad guys find increasingly creative ways to weaken your defenses. The newest phishing trend is an email that appears to be from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). The email has an intense subject line: “NOTICE OF CLOSING YOUR FACILITY AND DISINFECT NG THE AREA – BY NCDC WH 20982 COV-19 Due To Recent Corona Virus COVID-19 Pandemic.”
You’re instructed to download an attachment which is supposedly a letter from the CDC claiming that they will close your facility. If you download the file, you’d find that it is actually a malicious program designed to gain access to your company’s sensitive information. Don’t be tricked!
How to beat the bad guys:
The newest Coronavirus-themed phishing attack may be the most ruthless yet. The cybercriminals are sending emails that appear to be from a hospital and warn that you have been exposed to the virus through contact with a colleague, friend, or family member. Attached to the email is a “pre-filled” form to download and take with you to the hospital. Don’t be fooled. The attachment is actually a sophisticated piece of malware. This threat relies on panic and fear to bypass rational thinking. Don’t give in!
Remember to stay vigilant:
Even if the sender appears to be from a familiar organization, the email address could be spoofed.
The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused a massive shift in the number of employees who are working remotely. From a cybercriminal’s perspective, this is a perfect opportunity for their social engineering scams.
One scam involves cybercriminals calling you and posing as support personnel from the companies or services that your organization may be using to allow you to work remotely. Typically, the caller will try to gain your trust by stating your job title, email address, and any other information that they may have found online (or on your LinkedIn profile). Then, the caller claims that they will send you an email that includes a link that you need to click for important information. Don’t fall for this scam!
Remember the following to help protect yourself from these types of scams:
It’s that time again. Every 10 years, United States residents are required to respond to the Census survey. The primary purpose of the census is to provide a count of every member of the U.S. population.
By law, each household is required to complete the census survey. From a cybercriminal’s perspective, this is a perfect opportunity for their social engineering scams. Scammers might send emails or other messages that appear to come from the U.S. Census Bureau, or they might even pose as official Census Bureau workers and show up at your door!
This census season, keep the following tips in mind so you can safeguard your household’s sensitive information: