9 Ways to Prevent Fraud
Don’t let yourself be a victim – follow these best practices for avoiding fraud in the first place.
- Protect your personal and financial information — Don’t ever respond to requests for personal or financial information unless you have initiated the contact or know the organization you’re dealing with is legitimate.
- Destroy all your financial documents before putting them in the garbage or recycling — Shred, tear or burn credit card and bank statements and any other documents with sensitive information on them
- Never give your personal information over the phone — Unless you initiated the call.
- Report lost or stolen credit/debit cards, drivers license, social insurance card, passport, etc. immediately – That way, your bank can block or cancel your card so no one else can use it.
- Consult with a trusted and knowledgeable financial advisor — Do you have someone in your life you can call to talk to about financial matters? It’s a good idea to have someone you can trust on your side – whether it’s an advisor, an accountant, or someone at your bank.
- Review your financial statements monthly — Check for any charges or withdrawals you don’t remember making.
- Never share your PIN number or passwords with anyone and choose PINs and passwords that are hard to guess — Hide it with your hand or body whenever using an ABM or store keypad. And do not choose passwords or PINs that would be easy to guess, such as part of your address, phone number or birthday or the birth date of close family members.
- Keep virus and anti-spy ware up to date on your computers, tablets and mobile devices — This is key to making sure that no one can get access to personal information on your computer
- Visit websites you know are legitimate — And only shop online with reputable businesses.
Remember: Your bank will never send you an e-mail asking you to disclose personal information like your credit card number, online banking password or your mother’s maiden name.
Is It Legit? 5 Questions To Ask:
Not sure whether someone is contacting you for legitimate business reasons? Ask yourself these questions:
Is someone asking for personal or financial information over the phone, email or via text? Your bank would never call you on the phone or contact you via email to ask for personal information or details about your bank accounts, passwords, credit cards etc. They already have that information.
- Has someone requested your PIN number or password? A bank or service provider will never contact you and ask you for your passwords or hints about your passwords… (i.e. you mother’s maiden name)
- Do you have cheques or a new credit card that didn’t arrive in your mailbox? Someone may have taken your mail and could have access to what’s in there.
- Is someone asking you for full payment for goods or services up front? Never wire someone money you don’t know for a service or item you haven’t received yet.
- Are you being pressured to act now? If someone is pressuring you to act right away, it’s a sign this might not be legitimate. Take your time and do not send money or provide information until you’re sure someone is not trying to scam you.
Where to Get Help
Have you or someone you know experienced fraud? Tell someone and take action. Here’s where to get help:
Call your Credit Union – Esterhazy 306.745.6615
Call your local RCMP – Esterhazy 306.745.4740
Learn how to protect yourself online at Get Cyber Safe.
Be Fraud Smart. More information is available here.
Our Security Guarantee
Our online banking system is safeguarded with the best security available in a commercial environment, ensuring that your information is protected while data is transmitted between your computer and our banking server.
Internet encryption protects your information while it is in transit between your computer and our systems. Encryption ensures that data cannot be read or altered because the information is scrambled. Our online banking website uses a 128-bit SSL, encrypting both request and response transactions, through a secure connection. To establish a secure connection, verify that the prefix of our website address in your browser reads ‘https’ (and not simply ‘http’). All the browsers we support meet this requirement. If yours doesn’t, please download the appropriate encryption support from your browser’s supplier.
Controlled Access to Your Accounts
Your accounts can only be accessed by providing the correct login credentials and Personal Access Code (PAC), which only you know. Our employees never know these details and will never ask you to provide them with this information.
Enhanced Security Login Process
The first time you log in to your online banking account, you will be asked to choose from a list of security questions and answers. Be sure to pick questions with answers that are not easy to guess. Use ones that only you know. If you have a joint account, the questions and answers for both users must coincide. You can register your home or personal computer so that you will not have to answer a security question every time you log in. However, when you log in to your account from another machine, we will ask one of the security questions to confirm your identity.
For security reasons, we track the number of login attempts used to access your online banking. After a number of incorrect attempts to provide the correct PAC or answers to security questions, your online access will be immediately disabled. To regain access, please call our customer service representatives.
When visiting our branch, you can feel confident that your money is safe and secure, with the premises adorned by vaults, locked doors, security, and surveillance. We are keeping you just as safe when you bank online but once your information reaches your computer, you have a responsibility to protect it.
Personal Access Codes (PAC)
Online credentials can be numerous as they are needed for email accounts, social networking sites, online newspapers, and shopping websites. That’s a lot of usernames and passwords – and it can be tempting to use the same combination for everything. But this makes it far too easy for hackers because once they have one password, they can access all your sites. Login credentials are the keys to your accounts so don’t leave those keys around for anyone to find. For online banking, the key is your Personal Access Code (PAC). We recommend you:
- Choose a PAC that is easy for you to remember but difficult for others to guess. Avoid using current phone numbers, dates of birth, or social insurance numbers.
- Be smart and don’t save a list of your credentials on your PC. If you must write them down, keep these details locked away somewhere only you can access or consider using password-management software, which secures and encrypts usernames and passwords and allows you to use a single master password.
- Do not share your PAC with anyone, especially online. Employees of our financial institution will never call, email, write or ask you to provide your online banking credentials. Ever.
- Don’t authorize browsers to memorize your credentials. Saving these on your computer allows anyone using your PC to gain access to your login-protected sites.
- Consider changing your PAC every 90 days for optimum security.
When you move, it is important to notify us of your change of address. If your mailing information isn’t up-to-date, statements or letters that contain personal information will continue to be sent to your former address.
You may prefer to eliminate paper statements altogether, avoiding any possibility of mail theft. Eliminate paper documents, go electronic and be secure while doing it. Our e-Statements are a digital archive of your monthly banking activity than can be downloaded as a PDF from our secure online banking site.
Logging In and Out
When you are finished with your banking session, always log out by clicking the “Log Out” button, as opposed to simply closing the browser window. To help protect your information, your online banking session will end automatically if there has been no activity for 20 minutes or if your visit lasts longer than 60 minutes. If your session has timed out, no further transactions can be made until you log in again. This time-out feature helps protect your accounts from unauthorized access if your PC is left unattended or if you have forgotten to log out.
Clearing Cookies and Cache
When you spend time on the Internet, your browser stores information, such as the websites you visit, the images and files you view, and your personal information, including passwords and login details. This data is held on your computer’s hard drive and is known as ‘cache.’ Even though you may have logged out and closed your browser, this information may remain accessible. You can protect your data by clearing your browsing history regularly. Check your browser’s help menu on how to clear your cache and history.
Some web browsers have a feature that allows you to browse the Internet without the browser storing information, such as the sites you visit, the images you see and videos you watch. This feature is sometimes used by people who share the same computer. Private browsing is a temporary option and must be selected for it to be activated. Private browsing, however, does not give you immunity to spyware or make you anonymous. It is still possible for your Internet service provider, employer, or the websites you visit to track your online activity.
Monitoring Your Accounts
Frequently reviewing your paper and/or electronic account statements and registering for our alerts system ensures that you spot any incorrect or fraudulent transactions as soon as they occur. If your card has been skimmed (when the card’s magnetic stripe and PIN are fraudulently copied by embedded devices at ATMs or point-of-sale devices) or unauthorized transactions have been made, you will want to catch this as soon as possible. Every time you receive an account statement verify you made all the transactions.