Stay vigilant, stay safe
Scammers and fraudsters are constantly scheming up new and increasingly sophisticated ways to deceive you. While it may seem overwhelming at first, there are a number of ways to protect yourself from falling victim to fraud.
– 1.07.2021 –
Unauthorized PPP Solicitations Increasing
Be aware of companies soliciting services for your PPP loan or PPP loan forgiveness. 1st Security Bank will communicate directly with you about your PPP loan and the forgiveness process. If you have any doubt, please call your banker or the Business Banking team at (877) 372-4249. Learn More
Scammers claiming to be with DOJ, preying on elderly
The Office of Justice Programs’ Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) has received multiple reports that individuals claiming to represent the Department of Justice are calling members of the public as part of an imposter scam
Reports to the National Elder Fraud Hotline indicate these scammers falsely represent themselves as Department of Justice investigators or employees and attempt to obtain personal information from the call recipient, or they leave a voicemail with a return phone number.
The return phone number directs users to a recorded menu that matches the recorded menu for the department’s main phone number. Eventually, the user reaches an “operator” who steers the user to someone claiming to be an investigator. That “investigator” then attempts to gain the user’s personal information.
The department (DOJ) strongly encourages the public to remain vigilant and not to provide personal information during these calls, which appear to target the elderly.
Source: United States Office for Victims of Crime (OJP) (OVC.gov)
Phishing attempts are on the rise
Phishing emails and text messages may look like they’re from a company you know or trust. They may look like they’re from a bank, a credit card company, a social networking site, an online payment website or app, or an online store.
Phishing emails and text messages often tell a story to trick you into clicking on a link or opening an attachment.
- say they’ve noticed some suspicious activity or log-in attempts
- claim there’s a problem with your account or your payment information
- say you must confirm some personal information
- include a fake invoice
- want you to click on a link to make a payment
- say you’re eligible to register for a government refund
If the answer is “No,” it could be a phishing scam. Go back and review the tips in How to recognize phishing and look for signs of a phishing scam. If you see them, report the message and then delete it.
If the answer is “Yes,” contact the company using a phone number or website you know is real. Not the information in the email. Attachments and links can install harmful malware.
Source: United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC.gov)
Coronavirus Related Scams
SBA Alert: The U. S. Small Business Administration Warns Loan Applicants to Beware of Email Phishing Scams
⚠ If you applied for, or received either the SBA PPP or EIDL loan please take note:
Email phishing campaigns where malicious actors are impersonating the SBA and its Office of Disaster Assistance to collect personally identifiable information (PII) for fraudulent purposes have surfaced
Mortgage Protection Insurance
1st Security Bank is aware of fraud attempts disguised as an offer for Mortgage Protection Insurance or similar. DISCARD any solicitations for these services! 1st Security Bank is not affiliated with any mortgage insurance companies.
Be alert to "investment opportunities"
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is warning people about online promotions, including on social media, claiming that the products or services of publicly-traded companies can prevent, detect, or cure coronavirus and that the stock of these companies will dramatically increase in value as a result. Learn more from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
Awareness is your first defence
Keep a close eye on your financial accounts.
Make a habit of regularly checking your banking and credit card accounts for fraudulent purchases or suspicious activity. Even a small transaction that you don't recognize could be a warning sign of a larger fraud scheme.
Check your free annual credit reports from the 3 major credit reporting agencies.
By law, Equifax, Experian PLC, and TransUnion are required to provide one free copy of your credit report every 12 months. You can order your free credit reports online from the authorized website annualcreditreport.com, or by calling (800) 322-8228. You will need to provide your name, address, social security number, and date of birth to verify your identity.
Education is your armor
Keep a close eye on your financial accounts.