Customer Awareness Program
*IMPORTANT NOTICE – Valley State Bank will NEVER ask you for your account number or personal information by email, text message or phone. If you receive a fraudulent email or text, please contact us at LAycock@valleystate.com or JHallmark@valleystate.com or by calling our Bookkeeping Department at (256) 332-3600.
Valley State Bank is dedicated to safeguarding your information. We are committed to working with you to protect your accounts and personal information.
You also play a vital role in these protection efforts. One simple step you can take is to review your accounts regularly. With Valley State Bank’s Online Banking there is no need to wait for your monthly statement to arrive in the mail. With the use of online banking you can set up “Notify Me” alerts on your account. You can set the alerts to text your cell phone.
Identity Theft is a serious crime that can destroy your credit and ruin your good name. You can take steps now to prevent becoming a victim of identity theft. Start by staying informed of the latest scams. These scams can be committed in the online environment or physical information world. Many times the criminals utilize multiple techniques to obtain private information and perpetrate fraud.
Extra steps you can take to protect your identity:
Spyware and Viruses
Spyware and viruses are destructive programs loaded on your computer without your permission or knowledge. Spyware appears as a legitimate application on your computer but actually monitors your activity and collects sensitive information. Viruses are harmful programs spread through the Internet that can compromise the security of your computer. Maintaining up-to-date anti-spyware and virus protection software and firewalls help avoid these risks.
Pop-ups appear in a separate browser window and, when clicked, can download harmful spyware or adware to your computer. While some make legitimate offers, many pop-ups are attempts to obtain your sensitive information. Valley State Bank will never ask you to verify personal financial information in pop-up advertisement.
To protect yourself from unwanted pop ups, activate the pop up blocker on your web browser and only accept pop ups from trusted sites. If your web browser does not have this capability, we strongly suggest you download a newer version.
Telephone Fraud, or "Vishing"
In vishing attempts, criminals send phony emails that ask customers to call a phone number. The phone number may differ from an actual Valley State Bank phone number by only one digit or it may be completely different. Either way the criminals hope to catch you off guard usually by emphasizing urgency in the email text. If the phone number is dialed, callers will either be prompted to enter their sensitive information via the digits on the phone or via voice. The information is collected in order to be used for fraudulent activities.
Please remember that Valley State Bank will never call you and ask for sensitive information (ex. Social security number, access ID, passcode or account number, or ATM/debit card number and PIN). If you receive an e-mail or phone call requesting that you dial a particular number, do not call the number. Contact Valley State Bank’s Bookkeeping Department immediately at 1-256-332-3600.
Mobile Device Fraud, or "Smishing"
Smishing is a form of criminal activity using social engineering techniques similar to phishing. As cell phones and PDAs become more technologically advanced, attackers are finding new ways to target victims. By using text messaging or email, an attacker could lure you to a malicious site or convince you to install malicious code on your portable device. As a result, an attacker may be able to accomplish the following: abuse your service, use your device in another illegal attack, or gain access to account information. (At this point Valley State Bank does not offer Mobile banking.)
Helpful Tips to Protect You
While online banking is safe, as a general rule you should always be careful about giving out your personal financial information over the Internet. Review the following tips to protect your personal information while using the Internet.
We take numerous steps to keep your account information secure. However, you must take precautions as well.
For the most current information and alerts from Homeland Security regarding online security www.us-cert.gov. If you need any assistance, you can also contact us at 256-332-3600.
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