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Privacy & Security

Fraud Prevention & Alerts

Important Fraud Alert:

IBMSECU Members Receiving Spoofed Phone Calls to Acquire Sensitive Information

IBMSECU has become aware of members receiving fraudulent phone calls from individuals claiming to be from the Credit Union Fraud Department. These fraudsters are using spoofing technology to make the phone calls appear to be coming from a legitimate IBMSECU phone number.

The fraudster claims that a fraudulent charge has been made on the member’s account and the member is asked to confirm his or her identity.

While IBMSECU actively monitors your accounts for potential fraud, please remember that we will NEVER initiate a call or email asking you to give us your card PIN, Online Banking username and password, or full card number. If you have any doubt about the validity of a phone call you receive from us, please hang up and call our direct number at 800.873.5100 to speak with us immediately.

Please also be aware that you can use our free Card Control service through Online Banking to lock your card until you are able to reach us. This will ensure that your card is protected until you are able to contact us.
 

Fraud News Feed

FTC says “Success By Health” is a pyramid scheme

Thu, Jan 16, 2020

Earn UNLIMITED income! Quit your job! Change your life!
Do we have your attention? Good! Are you rolling your eyes? Even better. That means you’ve heard warnings about illegal pyramid schemes that masquerade as legitimate multi-level marketing (MLM) businesses and promise life-changing income, but take your money instead.

Read More

Credit repair: Fixing mistakes on your credit report

Thu, Jan 16, 2020

If you’ve been reading our new year, new credit series, then you have your credit report and learned how to read it. But what if you see mistakes? Maybe it’s an account that you didn’t open, an error in your name or address, or a bankruptcy that doesn’t really belong to you. Here are tips on fixing your credit, while avoiding scams.

Read More

2020 Census jobs: It costs nothing to apply

Wed, Jan 15, 2020

We saw it with the 2010 Census: scammers lying to people about the availability of jobs as census takers, and charging fees to help people get those jobs. If history is any indication, the scammers will likely be back at it for the 2020 Census. Knowing how the recruiting and hiring process works will help you spot, avoid, and report scams.

Read More

Reading your credit report

Wed, Jan 15, 2020

You’re getting your financial life in order in 2020. Yesterday, we explained how to get your credit report. Now that you have it, you want to know what it means. Here’s where to start.

Read More

Getting your credit report

Tue, Jan 14, 2020

Now that you know why credit matters, it’s time to get your credit in order. Sometimes the hardest part is getting started. The first step is to pull your credit report.

Read More

New year, new credit blog series

Mon, Jan 13, 2020

With the start of a new year, many of us want to get our finances in order. We often think about budgeting, but what about credit? To help you get a handle on credit, we’ve put together a four-part blog series: (1) why does your credit matter; (2) getting your credit report; (3) reading your credit report; and (4) fixing your credit report.

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Free cruise? Try illegal robocall with an upsell.

Fri, Jan 10, 2020

The recorded message made it sound easy — take a phone survey and get two free tickets to go on a cruise. But, you guessed it, it wasn’t that simple. The call was an illegal robocall. And those free tickets came with a catch.

Today the FTC announced charges against the operators of a “free cruise” telemarketing scheme that made millions of illegal robocalls and dialed numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry. The callers also faked caller ID information so it looked like the call was coming from a local number.

Read More

Protecting small business from imposters

Thu, Jan 9, 2020

Opening a business requires planning, elbow grease, and probably some paperwork to register your new company with your state or local government. And that’s where some not-so-honest outfits may try to confuse you into thinking they’re from the government and that you need to pay money to complete your registration. Their mailings look like an official bill for documents to complete your registration – and may even include what looks like a government seal. To convince you it’s legit, the mailer may include your business identification number. To get you to pay, the mailer claims that you need to hurry up and pay or you could be in legal hot water.

But here’s the thing: the people behind the mailers are not from the government and you probably don’t need the paperwork they’re talking about, at least not to complete your registration. At best, you’ll get overcharged. At worst, they could be scammers who steal your money or account information. What can you do to steer clear of these schemes?

Read More

Would you rather save $5,000 or lose 5 pounds?

Tue, Dec 31, 2019

If you picked the money, you’re not alone. As we start 2020, many of us are making financial resolutions. Of course, saving more or paying down debt sounds great, but getting started can feel overwhelming. Don’t worry – the FTC has five ideas for things you can do to start the new year off right.

Read More

Mind your work-at-home business

Mon, Dec 30, 2019

Starting a work-at-home business can give you the flexibility to set your own hours and be your own boss. But when you search online or get ads by email, you’ll often find scammers instead of a real opportunity.

Read More

Fraud Alerts

March 20, 2019 – IBMSECU Members Receiving Spoofed Phone Calls to Acquire Sensitive Information

IBMSECU has become aware of members receiving fraudulent phone calls from individuals claiming to be from the Credit Union Fraud Department. These fraudsters are using spoofing technology to make the phone calls appear to be coming from a legitimate IBMSECU phone number.

The fraudster claims that a fraudulent charge has been made on the member’s account and the member is asked to confirm his or her identity.

While IBMSECU actively monitors your accounts for potential fraud, please remember that we will never initiate a call or email asking you to give us your card PIN #, Online Banking username and password, or full card number. If you have any doubt about the validity of a phone call you receive from us, please hang up and call our direct number at 800.873.5100 to speak with us immediately.

Please also be aware that you can use our free Card Control service through Online Banking to lock your card until you are able to reach us. This will ensure that your card is protected until you are able to contact us.

September 8, 2017 – What you need to know about the Equifax Data Breach

In a data breach lasting from mid-May through July, 143 million American consumers had their sensitive personal information exposed at Equifax, one of the three major credit reporting agencies.

During this breach, hackers accessed people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and some driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, and dispute documents that included personal information.

What should you do now?

First, find out if you were one of the people whose information was exposed. Equifax has set up a website, www.equifaxsecurity2017.com, to check your status. Once on this site, click on the "Potential Impact" link and enter the information requested. Please make sure you are on an secure computer when entering your sensitive information.

Equifax is offering one year of credit monitoring, Social Security number monitoring, identity theft insurance, credit report lock, and copies of your credit report for free. You can enroll through their site through November 21, 2017.

Equifax also provides answers to frequently asked questions on their site.

Here are some other steps to take to help protect yourself after a data breach:
 

  • If you have an IBMSECU myChoice Checking, myDefense Checking,  or Grand Checking account, Identity Theft Protection Services and Credit Monitoring of the three major consumer credit bureaus are included at no charge. Make sure you are enrolled in the Credit Monitoring service to take full advantage of this great benefit!
     
  • Check your credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and Transunion for free by visiting annualcreditreport.com.
     
  • Consider placing a credit freeze on your files. A credit freeze makes it harder for someone to open a new account in your name. Keep in mind that a credit freeze won’t prevent a thief from making charges to your existing accounts.
     
  • Monitor your existing credit card and bank accounts closely for charges you don’t recognize.
     
  • If you decide against a credit freeze, consider placing a fraud alert on your files. A fraud alert warns creditors that you may be an identity theft victim and that they should verify that anyone seeking credit in your name really is you.
     
  • File your taxes early — as soon as you have the tax information you need, before a scammer can. Tax identity theft happens when someone uses your Social Security number to get a tax refund or a job. Respond right away to letters from the IRS.

 
Visit Identitytheft.gov/databreach to learn more about protecting yourself after a data breach.

Source: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/09/equifax-data-breach-what-do

March 28, 2017 – Employment scam using IBMSECU accounts

Please be aware of a new employment scam going around. An "employer" offers a job to an applicant through an online job listing site. As part of the job acceptance, the "employer" tells the applicant to open an account at IBMSECU, and even lists the nearest branches to visit. 

Once the account is open, the "employer" transfers money into the account and has the "employee" wire transfer money back to them on the same day.

When accepting a job, please know that a legitimate employer would never require you to send funds back for any reason. Please be careful.

June 09, 2015 – Important information regarding the U.S. Government data breach incident

It was recently announced that the U.S. Government has suffered a data breach affecting multiple Federal agencies and approximately 4 million individuals. The Federal Government has confirmed that the information hacked could be used to facilitate identity theft and fraud. The individuals affected are government employees and political appointees.

Below are recommended steps to remain vigilant against possible identity fraud:

  1. Be wary of emails or telephone calls that request information. Neither the U.S. Government nor our financial institution will ask you to provide any information in relation to this possible data breach incident.
  2. Check your Account Statements. Review your statements carefully and repeatedly. Any purchases, large or small, should be verified as a purchase you made.
  3. Check Your Mail and Your Email. Look for mail and emails addressed to you that you do not recognize. This may include credit card accounts, medical bills, or notices from companies with which you do not have a relationship.
  4. Get Help. You are not responsible for fraudulent transactions on your account, but you need to notify us as soon as possible if you see any suspicious activity. In addition, if you are concerned about fraud beyond the transactions on your current account, you may have access to an Identity Fraud Protection program that includes Fully Managed Identity Fraud Research, Remediation, and Recovery Services. We will submit your name to our Recovery Care Center and, within 24 business hours, you will be contacted by an Identity Recovery Advocate who will investigate the situation and work on your behalf to remediate any fraud. Contact us with any questions.
  5. Take Action. If you suspect that your identity has been compromised, you can place a fraud alert on your credit file by calling any one of the three major credit reporting agencies shown below. A fraud alert is a notation on your credit file to warn credit issuers that there may be a problem. The credit issuer is asked to contact you at the telephone number that you supply to validate that you are the person applying for the credit. This is not the same as credit monitoring.

TransUnion: 1.800.916.8800
Experian: 1.888.397.3742
Equifax: 1.800.685.1111

In accordance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act, it is permissible for consumers to request a free copy of their credit report once every 12 months from each of the three major credit reporting agencies (TransUnion, Experian and Equifax).

To order a free credit report:
Online: www.annualcreditreport.com or by Telephone: 1.877.322.8228

If your IBMSECU account includes identity theft protection, or if you have purchased an identity theft protection package from our website, and you suspect identity fraud of any kind, let us know. Whether it is financial or non-financial fraud, even if it is not connected to this incident or your account, we can help. You will be assigned to a certified, professional Identity Recovery Advocate at no cost to you. These professionals are standing by to answer questions, place fraud alerts, research potential fraud, dispute fraudulent transactions on your behalf, and perform the legwork to return you to pre-theft status, no matter how long it takes—all at no cost to you as a valued accountholder with IBMSECU.

We appreciate your trust in our financial institution. It is important to us to provide professional identity theft protection services for our IBMSECU accountholders for any identity theft incident that affects you and/or your family.

November 24, 2014 – ‘Phishing’ emails appearing to come from IBMSECU

Members have reported receiving fraudulent emails appearing to come from “IBM SE EMPLOYEES CR UNION” using the email address update@onlineservice.com.

The email claims that the recipient’s account has been locked after a recent attempt to log in to Online Banking. The email asks the recipient to download a “secure verification form” to verify his or her identity and then to log in to Online Banking to update the recipient’s billing and security settings.

This email is a phishing scam! We would never send an email requesting that you download a form to verify your identity. Please note that the credit union would NEVER ask for your confidential information over the phone or in an email. If you receive an email of this nature – DO NOT provide the requested information. If you are unsure about the validity of an email you receive, please contact us directly at serviceplus@ibmsecu.org, 800.873.5100 or 561.982.4700.

You can report any instances of fraud to the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov and you can file formal complaints with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) at http://www.ic3.gov/. The IC3 is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National White Collar Crime Center, and the Bureau of Justice Assistance.

November 12, 2014 – United States Postal Service (USPS) Data Breach Incident

The USPS is the most recent victim of a data breach. For approximately 750,000 USPS employees and retirees, compromised data includes names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, addresses, beginning and end dates of employment, and emergency contact information for employees. For the approximately 2.9 million customers, compromised information includes names, home addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses.

Individuals are encouraged to report any suspected instances of identity fraud to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov. Additionally, you may contact one of our branches to be submitted to our Identity Care Recovery Center if you find suspicious activity involving the use of your identification information.

It has been reported that the USPS will provide monitoring services for individuals whose information was compromised. HOWEVER, credit monitoring only alerts you to new credit or changes to your existing credit. Since credit card information was not included in the compromised data, a criminal use of your data may not trigger a credit monitoring alert.

If you suspect any fraudulent transactions, please contact IBMSECU immediately at 800.873.5100 or 561.982.4700 . If your IBMSECU account includes identity theft protection or if your have purchased an identity theft protection package from our website, and you suspect identity fraud of any kind, whether financial or non-financial, even if it is not connected to this incident, just let us know. You will be assigned to a certified, professional Recovery Advocate at no cost to you. These professionals are standing by to answer questions, place fraud alerts, research potential fraud, dispute fraudulent transactions on your behalf, and perform the legwork to return you to pre-theft status, no matter how long it takes.

Be wary of emails or telephone calls that request information. Neither the USPS nor our financial institution will ask you to provide any information in relation to this possible data breach incident. Below are recommended steps to remain vigilant against possible identity fraud:

  1. Check your bank statements. Review your statements carefully and repeatedly. Any purchases, large or small, should be verified as a purchase you made.
  2. Get help. You need to notify us as soon as possible if you see any suspicious activity. If you are concerned about fraud beyond the transactions on your current account, you may have access to an Identity Theft Protection program that includes Fully Managed Identity Fraud Research, Remediation, and Recovery Services. We will submit your name to our Recovery Care Center and, within 24 business hours, you will be contacted by a Recovery Advocate who will investigate the situation and remediate any fraud on your behalf. Contact us with any questions.
  3. Take action. If you suspect that your identity has been compromised, you can place a fraud alert on your credit file by calling any one of the three major credit reporting agencies shown below. A fraud alert is a notation on your credit file to warn credit issuers that there may be a problem. The credit issuer is asked to contact you at the telephone number that you supply to validate that you are the person applying for the credit. This is not the same as credit monitoring.

Transunion: 1.800.916.8800
Experian: 1.888.397.3742
Equifax: 1.800.685.1111

In accordance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act, it is permissible for consumers to request a free copy of their credit report once every 12 months from each of the three major credit reporting agencies (TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax). Order a free credit report: Online: www.annualcreditreport.com or by Telephone: 1.877.322.8228.

We appreciate your trust in our financial institution. It is important to us to provide professional identity theft protection services for our IBMSECU accountholders for any identity theft incident that affects you and/or your family.

Fraud Education

Combat check fraud and identity theft

If you can answer Yes to any of the following questions regarding a Cashier’s or Official Check you intend to deposit, please notify your Teller or Member Service Representative immediately.

  • Do you have any reason to suspect that this check is not valid?
  • Have you recently advertised something for sale or purchased something over the Internet? If so, is this check payment for that item?
  • Have you been asked to wire, or otherwise return, a portion of the funds back to the sender or some other third party?
  • Have you recently received an email or letter stating you have won a sweepstakes or lottery? Are they claiming that all you need to do to collect your prize is provide them with your account number and other personal information so they can wire the funds into your account?
  • Have you recently accepted a job offer over the internet and received a payroll advance by check, or were asked for your personal information in order to process a wire into your account? Were you asked to return a portion of the payment for tax purposes?

Please be advised: If a Cashier’s or Official Check is returned as a counterfeit or forgery, the Credit Union will have no choice but to hold you liable for the loss. Your assistance in the prevention of Check Fraud and Identity Theft is greatly appreciated. Please let us know if you have any questions or need more information, and refer to our Fraud Prevention Brochure for additional details.

Keyloggers – what are they and how can you protect yourself?

A keylogger is a hidden computer program that records the keystrokes you make, online and offline. After keystrokes are logged, they are secretly stored on your computer for later retrieval, or sent, via the Internet, to a thief. The crook then examines the keylog with the hope of finding passwords, or other useful information that could be used to compromise the system or steal your identity.

Any information entered into the computer can be retrieved. For example, a keylogger can reveal the contents of your personal email, or the passwords you use to access online banking. Once they gain access to your financial information, crooks can transfer funds, change billing addresses, and make purchases, often without raising any suspicion. When someone steals your wallet or purse, you know there has been a breach of your personal information. The danger of keyloggers is that you often don’t know until it is too late.

Hackers and identity thieves will place keylogger programs on your system by embedding them in “free” software you download from the Internet or through automatic installations initiated by pop-up ads or email. Once installed, the software works invisibly to monitor and record your every move.

Here are some things you can do to protect yourself:

  • Adjust your internet settings to prevent your computer from installing programs automatically from the Internet or launching them automatically from email. Once you’ve disabled the automatic installation, you should see a prompt anytime an application attempts to install itself. Do not click OK, Yes, or Run This Program if prompted unless you trust the program and are fully aware of its purpose.
  • Update your operating system frequently. If you use windows, visit the Windows Update site and install patches marked “critical.”
  • Configure your browser to use a higher security setting. In Internet Explorer, choose “Tools” >> “Internet Options,” and select the “Security” tab. Make sure that the Internet Zone is configured to Medium Security or above.
  • Avoid downloading software from non-trusted web sites, such as “warez” (illegal software) sites.
  • Install a firewall. Firewalls keep programs from contacting the Internet without your permission. Adware and Spyware cannot function without sending information from your computer to the Internet.
  • Scan your computer for Spyware. One free program is Spybot Search and Destroy (http://www.safer-networking.org/en/index.html). Ad-Aware is another good tool to eliminate Adware programs (http://www.lavasoft.com/).

Don't get caught by a phishing scam

Phishing is an Internet scam that uses fraudulent emails to deceive consumers into disclosing their credit card numbers, bank account information, and other sensitive information.

Internet scammers send deceptive emails pretending to be from a company the victim has a relationship with. The email requests that the recipient update or validate his billing information in order to keep his account active. The email directs the victim to a look-alike Web site of the business, tricking him into responding to what looks like a legitimate request. The victim unknowingly submits his financial information to the scammers, who use it to make purchases and obtain credit.

If you get an email warning you that an account of yours will be shut down unless you confirm your billing information, do not reply or click on the link in the email. Instead, contact the company named in the email using a telephone number or website address you know to be genuine. IBMSECU would never initiate an email asking for your personal information. However, for identification purposes we may request information in response to an inquiry from you. Please call us at 800.873.5100 if you feel uncertain about the validity of an email you have received from us.

If you receive a fraudulent email, report the suspicious activity to the FTC by forwarding the email to spam@uce.gov. If you believe you’ve been scammed, file your complaint at www.ftc.gov, and then visit the FTC’s Identity Theft Web site (www.ftc.gov/idtheft) to learn how to minimize your risk of damage from identity theft.

Visit www.ftc.gov/spam to learn other ways to avoid email scams and deal with deceptive spam.

What should I do if I receive a scam letter or email?

First, it is important that you do not correspond AT ALL with the persons named in the scam letters. Any contact with the perpetrators puts you at risk of being scammed. Do not reply to their letters, emails, or call them by telephone. You can report cases of fraud to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). If you have been victimized and lost money due to such scams, you should contact your local Secret Service office. Contact information can be found under the U.S. Government section of your local white pages or on the Secret Service’s website

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