Do you know what's in your email?
There could be dangerous messages in your email that tempt you to disclose your personal and financial information, a practice known as phishing.
Tips to Avoid Phishing Scams
- Watch for high-pressure emails urging you to disclose personal financial information or to conduct financial transactions through a new website
- Only conduct transactions on a secure page with "https" in the address line (the "s" means secure)
- Watch for suspicious website address that are different from ones you use regularly. If you have doubts, close the browser, reopen it and go the website address you've used previously.
- Review financial statements carefully for any unauthorized activity
- Regularly update your browser and operating system software
- Immediately report any suspicious activity
- Review the Federal Trade Commission's information about phishing and other important online security information
PayPal and eBay Phishing Fraud
Phishing emails often are sent asking you to provide your PayPal or eBay account information in order to verify recent account activity. Some of the emails may include warnings of fraudulent purchases and appear to be legitimate. Do not follow any links in these emails and do not provide any personal information.
Details About Online Fraud
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) warns computer users about pop-up windows, phony websites and fraudulent emails that attempt to trick you into revealing confidential personal and/or financial information. These scams usually involve a pop-up window or email link directing you to a fraudulent website that appears legitimate. Once you’re redirected, you’re asked for personal and private financial information that is then used to commit fraud.
What is a Pop-up Window?
This is generally an ad that appears in small browser windows that “pop up” over or under the window you are viewing. Most pop-ups are simply advertisements, and some contain Trojan horse programs similar to a computer virus.
Trojan horse: A destructive program that masquerades as a benign application. Unlike viruses, Trojan horses do not replicate themselves but they can be just as destructive. One of the most dangerous types of Trojan horse is a program that claims to rid your computer of viruses but instead spreads viruses through your computer.
A phony, or fraudulent, website usually resembles a legitimate financial institution or other trusted organization. These sites use an organization’s website graphics and logos; however, they are designed to steal your personal information. A common technique to tempt you to a fraudulent website is through spam email.
Spam: Unsolicited “junk” email sent to large numbers of people to promote products or services.
Here are some tips to help protect your First Financial accounts and personal information from fraudulent pop-up ads and phony websites:
- Purchase and install pop-up blocking software on your personal computer
- Use Google or Yahoo to search for the terms “adware” or “spyware”
- Avoid downloading files from unknown sources
- Research any software completely before downloading it to your personal computer
- Use the latest security software on your personal computer
- Avoid clicking on links provided in suspicious emails
- Save or “bookmark” frequently visited websites to your list of favorites and then access these sites through your saved links