Phishing schemes use forged Emails claiming to be from someone (an individual or company) you know and trust. They attempt to get you to reveal sensitive information like user IDs, passwords, account numbers or other sensitive data. Criminals will use this data to access your accounts, financial information and/or your identity.
Many forged Emails ask you to supply, confirm, or update personal information by clicking on a link in the Email. The link will connect you to a Web page or login that appears to belong to the company mentioned in the Email. This is referred to as a "spoofed" site. Often the site looks just like the company's site -- but it's not. The spoof may be a pop up window or an embedded image over the actual site. The goal of the criminals is to get you to enter your personal data so they can steal your information.
Tips to Protect Yourself
- Don't open emails from senders you don't know.
- Never access a web site from a link in an email, especially a web site that asks for personal information.
- If you have any doubts about the authenticity of an email, do not respond, call the sender or type in the web address.
- Beware of emails sent offering you a prize or a discount and then asking you to choose a user id and password (most people use the same access information for several accounts- easier to remember-.thieves will collect your login information and try them at other sites, like financial institutions or credit card sites).
- Do monitor your account activity closely and watch for unusual activity - You can use Paradise Bank Online Banking to monitor account balances, 24/7.
- Change your password every 30-60 days.
- Note that fraudulent emails often include misspellings and poor grammar.
- Update your anti-virus software frequently. Common anti-virus software includes McAfee and Norton.
- Beware of emails with a sense of urgency; attempting to rush you into action. Messages like, "Update now or we'll close your account..."
- Do not include personal or sensitive data in or in response to an email.