At Jefferson Bank, we make the privacy of our customers' information a top priority. We are pleased to provide you with information about preventing fraud and identity theft, answers to common questions for some of the most important fraud prevention issues facing individuals today and other available online resources.
Jefferson Bank does not communicate with consumers by email, text message, or by telephone to request important personal information such as your name, account number, date of birth, social security number, card numbers, personal identification number (PIN) or security codes associated with your ATM or Check Card, or your Online Banking User ID or password. Please contact the bank immediately if you have any suspicions that you have received these types of emails, text messages, or phone calls.
You may reach us at (210) 734-4311 or by using the Contact Us form.
Thank you for putting your trust in Jefferson Bank.
Fraud Prevention List
The following are just some of the ways you can reduce the risk of identity theft:
- Keep your sensitive information secure and in a safe location. Such items include credit cards, bank cards, passwords/PINs, bank statements/receipts, bills, social security cards, or documents which bear your social security number, health insurance cards, driver’s license and number, and other personally identifiable information. When disposing of these items, do so by shredding.
- Don’t put any mail in your curbside mailbox until shortly before it will be picked up. Or, mail bill payments and other items that contain personal information at a U.S. Postal Service drop box rather than in your curbside mailbox that is not secure/locked. Take your mail out of your curbside mailbox as soon as possible after it has been delivered. If you are traveling, have the U.S. Postal Service hold your mail or have someone you trust pick it up daily.
- Do not give out personal information, such as your account numbers, card numbers, Social Security/tax identification numbers, passwords, or PINs, unless you have initiated the call. If you ever believe you are not talking to a representative of a legitimate company, hang up and call the phone number listed in the telephone book.
- Prevent “shoulder surfing” by standing between the ATM, Pay-at-the-Pump device, or Point of Sale machine and anyone waiting to use the terminal. Shield the keypad from unauthorized skimming cameras and other patrons when entering your PIN and transaction amount.
- Examine your credit card and financial institution statements immediately upon receipt to determine whether there were any unauthorized transactions. Report any unauthorized transactions to your financial institution immediately.
- Make prompt inquiry if bills or statements are not received in a timely fashion. This could mean that they are being diverted by an identity thief.
- Obtain copies of your credit report annually from each of the three major credit-reporting agencies to be sure they are accurate.
- Stop receiving further pre-approved offers for credit by calling (888) 5-OPT-OUT.
- Ask to be removed from national direct mail lists by writing to the DMA Mail Preference Service, P.O. Box 9008, Farmingdale, NY 11735-9008. Include your name and address.
- Ask not to receive telephone solicitations from national marketers by writing to the DMA Telephone Preference Service, P.O. Box 9014, Farmingdale, NY 11735-9014. Include your name, address, and telephone number.
The following are just some of the ways you can reduce the risk of financial/check fraud:
- The next time you order checks include only your name and address. You should not include your driver’s license, social security number or home phone number.
- Store your checks, deposit slips, bank statements and canceled checks in a secure and locked location. Never leave your checkbook in your vehicle or out in the open.
- When you are writing checks to pay on your credit card accounts, DO NOT put the complete account number or credit card number on the “Memo” line. Instead, just put the last four numbers. The credit card company knows the rest of the number.
- Unless needed for tax purpose, destroy old canceled checks, account statements, deposit tickets, and ATM receipts. The personal information on these items may help someone impersonate you and take money from your account.
- When you receive your check order, make sure all of the checks are there, and that none are missing. Report missing checks to your bank immediately. Should you fail to receive your order by mail, alert the bank. Checks could have been stolen from mail box or lost in transit.
- Don’t leave blank spaces on the payee and amount lines. Don’t make a check payable to cash. If lost or stolen, the check can be cashed by anyone. Never endorse a check until you are ready to cash or deposit it. The information can be altered if it is lost or stolen.
- The type of pen you use makes a difference. Most ballpoint and marker inks are dye based, meaning that the pigments are dissolved in the ink. But, based on ink security studies, gel pens, like the Uniball 207 uses gel ink that contains tiny particles of color that are trapped into the paper, making check washing a lot more difficult.
- Don’t carry more credit/bank cards than necessary.
- Reconcile your bank statement within 30 days of receipt in order to detect any irregularities. Otherwise, you may become liable for any losses due to check fraud.
- Photocopy the contents of your wallet. Copy both sides of each license, credit card, etc. You will now know what you had in your wallet and all of the account numbers and phone numbers to call, in case of loss or theft. Keep the photocopies in a secured, safe place. Also carry a photocopy of your passport when traveling either here or abroad.
- If your wallet is ever lost or stolen, here is some critical information to limit the damage:
- Cancel your credit cards, ATM, and check cards immediately. Have the toll free numbers and your card numbers handy so you know whom to call. Keep this information in a secure, safe place where you can find it.
- File a police report immediately in the jurisdiction where the loss or theft occurred. This proves to card providers you were diligent, and it’s a first step toward an investigation.
- Call the three national credit reporting agencies and the Social Security Administration immediately to place a Fraud Alert on your name and social security number. The numbers are: Equifax: (800) 525-6285; Experian: (888) 397-3742; Trans Union: (800) 680-7289; Social Security Administration fraud line: (800) 269-0271
The following are just some of the ways you can protect your computer and mobile devices:
- Don’t click on links or attachments in unsolicited emails, especially those asking for personal information.
- Don’t respond to phone calls or text messages that request for your card number, PIN, security code, or expiration date to be entered.
- Go directly to our site. The best way to get to any site is to type in the web address (URL) directly into your browser and then bookmark it. Be careful with your spelling. Make sure you only conduct web- based transactions on a “secure” page.
- Do not click on any unexpected pop-ups or advertisements when browsing. Close these pop-ups by clicking the “X” instead of clicking within the window or advertisement itself.
- Review your browser security settings and set them to a high enough level to help detect unauthorized downloads. (Click your browser’s “Help” menu for steps).
- Review your mobile phone security settings. Every device is different but the following should be common security settings for mobile devices (smartphones)
- Set a PIN or password
- Enable encryption settings
- Set maximum failed login attempts to result in device wipe or device lock
- Set device recovery, such as Find My iPhone to make it possible to retrieve lost or stolen devices
- Update and backup your mobile device periodically. Your device operating system needs security updates as well.
- Change your password frequently. Every 30-60 days is recommended and use “strong” and “complex” passwords that cannot be easily guessed. Make passwords complex with various character types such as capital/lower case, numbers, and special characters. Don’t use PINs or passwords that are easy to guess (for example, don’t use birth dates or spouse, child, or pet names).
- Keep your computer operating system and browser up-to-date with the latest security updates. Also update third-party software such as Java and Adobe Flash Player. Set them to automatically update.
- Install and use updated anti-virus/anti-malware protection software to prevent virus, malware, and spyware infections. Common programs include: Microsoft Security Essentials, McAfee VirusScan and Symantec Norton AntiVirus.
- Periodically scan for viruses, malware or spyware and remove unwanted software it detects.
- Install a personal firewall on your computer. A firewall works like a filter that prevents access to information on your computer. Windows computers have a firewall installed by default but be sure it is enabled.
The following resources are available online and are in no way associated with Jefferson Bank. The websites below provide information on known threats, security tips, and security best practices.
OnGuardOnline.gov is the federal government’s website to help you be safe, secure and responsible online. The Federal Trade Commission manages OnGuardOnline.gov, in partnership with the federal agencies listed below. OnGuardOnline.gov is a partner in the Stop Think Connect campaign, led by the Department of Homeland Security, and part of the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education, led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the nation’s consumer protection agency. The FTC works to prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop and avoid them.
StaySafeOnline.org is powered by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA). The NCSA's mission is to educate and empower a digital society to use the Internet safely and securely at home, work, and school, protecting the technology we use, the networks we connect to, and our shared digital assets.
The FCC (Federal Communication Commission) Smartphone Security Checker is a tool designed to help smartphone owners who aren't protected against mobile security threats. To use this tool, choose your mobile operating system and then follow the 10 customized steps to secure your mobile device.
US-CERT is the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team. It is an official website of the Department of Homeland Security that provides tips and advice on common security issues for non-technical computer users.
Between 3 and 4 million smartphones are stolen every year. It's your modern-day purse snatching. Many people put their entire private and work lives on these devices which can cost up to 500 bucks. Losing a device or getting it stolen can feel like a disaster, way beyond just the monetary loss.
Cybersecurity should not be limited to the home, office, or classroom. It is important to practice safe online behavior and secure our Internet-enabled mobile devices whenever we travel, as well. The more we travel and access the Internet on the go, the more cyber risks we face. No one is exempt from the threat of cyber crime, at home or on the go, but you can follow these simple tips to stay safe online when traveling.