Equifax Data Breach -Equifax, one of the three major credit bureaus, recently announced they experienced a massive data breach. The hackers accessed people's names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addressess and, in some instances, driver's license numbers. They also stole credit card numbers for about 209,000 people and dispute documents with personal identifying information for about 182,000 people.
If you have a credit report, there is a strong possibility your information was stolen. To determine if you have been affected by this breach, Equifax has set up a special website: https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com/. At the the bottom of the page, click on the link for "Potential Impact," enter some personal information and the site will tell you if you've been affected. Be sure you are on a secure network (not public wi-fi) when you submit sensitive data over the internet.
How can you protect yourself?
- Enroll in Equifax's services. Equifax is offering one year of free credit monitoring and other services, whether or not your information was exposed. You can sign up at https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com/.
- Monitor your credit reports. In addition, you can order a free copy of your credit report from all three of the credit reporting agencies at annualcreditreport.com. You are entitled to one free report from each of the credit bureaus once per year.
- Monitor your bank accounts. We also encourage you to monitor your financial accounts regulary for fraudulent transactions. Use online and mobile banking to keep a close eye on your accounts.
- Watch out for scams related to the breach. Do not trust e-mails that appear to come from Equifax regarding the breach. Attackers are likely to take advantage of the situation and craft sophisticated phishing e-mails.
You can learn more directly from Equifax at https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com/. You can also learn more by visiting the Federal Trade Commission's web page on the breach at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/09/equifax-data-breach-what-do. To learn more about how to protect yourself after a breach, visit https://www.identitytheft.gov/Info-Lost-or-Stolen.
Google Docs Phishing Attack -You may have seen on the news yesterday that a massive phishing attack utilizing a malicious application disguising itself as Google Docs was unleashed via email. The subject of the emails indicated a user had "shared a document on Google Docs with you." The intention of the scam was to trick users to click on a link in the email. They would then be redirected to a malicious site prompting them to sign in with valid Google credentials. If successful, the worm would then begin spamming contacts using the compromised email account. Google responded to the treat by revoking access of the malicious Google Doc application. The malicious links have also been taken down.
While this threat has been eliminated, there are thousands of other scammers writing malicious code to perpetrate new threats each day. Your online security is of utmost importance to us. Remember to always think before you click and ask yourself the following questions if you are unsure of the validity of an email:
- Do you know the sender?
- Is there a document attached that requires a password or asks you to download something or enable macros?
- Is there a link in the email that you are asked to click?
- Are they asking you for personal information (User ID/SSN/Password)?
- Did you win a contest you didn't know you had entered?
- Were you not expecting the email or does it make you feel uneasy?
If you can answer yes to any of the above, delete the email and/or contact the send directly via telephone to verify its legitimacy.
Please use caution and avoid becoming a victim of a malicious attack. If you have any questions, please contact Information Services at 620-663-0670.
Current Fraud Schemes -Please be advised of two emerging fraud trends that target businesses, employers, and taxpayers alike.
The first fraud scheme is a variation of the Business Email Compromise (BEC) scam. This social enginerring scam focuses specifically on public-sector entities such as government agencies, public universities, and colleges. Fraudsters contact the business entity claiming to be a representative from a valid contractor, requesting an update to the payment information for that contractor. The update is most commonly a change in routing and account information for ACH or Wire payments, but it could also be a request to change the method of payment from check to ACH or Wire. We encourage you to authenticate any request for a change in payment information received via email with a telephone call to the contractor or vendor to verify the legitimacy of the request.
The second fraud trend is a W-2 email phishing scam in which cybercriminals send emails to Human Resouce and payroll administrators requesting a list of all employees and their W-2 forms. This scam can result in the filing of fraudulent tax returns as well as identity theft. This year alone, over 29,000 taxpayers have alread been affected by the W-2 email phishing scam according to numbers by Forbes.
For more information on current fraud threats and Business Email Compromise, please visit the following websites:
NACHA: Current Fraud Threats Resource Center
FS-ISAC: Fraud Alert - Business E-mail Compromise Continues to Swindle and Defraud U.S. Businesses - June 19, 2015
FBI: Business E-Mail Compromise; An Emerging Global Threat - August 28, 2015
EPCOR: IRS Warns of Revamped W-2 Email Scam
Business Email Compromise Scam - Business Email Compromise (BEC) is defined as a sophisticated scam targeting businesses working with foreign suppliers and/or businesses that regulary perform wire transfer payments. The scam is carried out by compromising legitimate business e-mail accounts through social engineering or computer intrusion techniques to conduct unauthorized transfers of funds.
Best practices for added protection include:
- Create intrusion detection system rules that flag e-mails with extensions that are similar to company e-mail.
- Register all company domains that are slightly different than the actual company domain.
- Verify changes in vendor payment location by adding additional two-factor authentication such as having a secondary sign-off by company personnel.
- Confirm requests for transfers of funds. When using phone verification as part of the two-factor authentication, use previously known numbers, not the numbers provided in the e-mail request.
- Carefully scrutinize all e-mail requests for transfer of funds to determine if the requests are out of the ordinary.
Click here to learn more about this scam and find out how to protect yourself.
Skimmer Attacks are on the Rise - There has been a recent increase of ATM skimmer attacks. ATM skimmers are devices placed on ATMs and Point-of-Sale Terminals to steal account information. Be aware of anything on the front of the ATM or the Point-of-Sale Terminal that looks crooked, loose, or damaged; it could be a sign that a skimming device has been attached. Cover the keypad with your hand to block another person or camera from viewing you PIN entry. Provide us with your updated phone numbers, so you can be contacted if suspicious activity is detected.
Samsung SwiftKey Vulnerability - You may be seeing reports of a new exploit targeting a vulnerability in the SwiftKey keyboard pre-installed on multiple models of the Samsung Galaxy including the S5 and S6. The SwiftKey keyboard looks for updates over unencrypted lines, in unencrypted text. The vulnerability can be used by attackers to gain system privileges and obtain private information such as bank login credentials.
If you use a Samsung Galaxy phone, as a security best practice, we recommend that your device is configured to automatically receive security updates from Samsung. If you have questions about these updates, please contact your carrier. We also recommend that you minimize the use of unsecure wireless networks when accessing private information, such as mobile banking, until the security update for this vulnerability is made available.
Please click here to be redirected to a statement Samsung has issued regarding this vulnerability.
Beware of Juice Jacking! - Please beware of Juice Jacking, a popular tactic that fraudsters are using to compromise the security of your mobile device. In this particular scheme, criminals utilize free power charging stations, commonly located in airports, bus terminals, and coffee bars, to gain access of passwords, photos, and other personal information stored on your device.
Fraudsters tamper with these unsecured charging stations by installing a small computer that syncs with your device once it’s connected via the supplied USB cord. After your device is sync’d to the criminal’s computer, they can steal your private information stored on your device as well as remotely access your phone again any time in the future. In addition to stealing the information stored on your device, they can also infect your Smartphone or tablet with malicious code and/or malware.
Please use caution and avoid becoming a victim of this or any type of fraud! The safest route for charging your device away from home is to use your own power cord and plug it into a regular electrical outlet. Battery powered mobile charging devices are also safe alternatives. If you must use a random charging kiosk, the safest option is to completely power off your device before plugging it in.
Recent "Tech Support" Scam - Please be aware of a recent fraud trend that is circulating in our area. Customers have reported receiving an unsolicited phone call from a person claiming to be a representative of a reputable computer software or Anti-virus company. This caller will claim the customer’s computer is infected with malware and ask to be granted Remote Access to log into their PC and resolve the issue. Once this access is granted, the perpetrator can easily take control of their PC and infiltrate their Online Banking system, access saved passwords, download malicious software, and more. Don’t become a victim! Click here to learn more about this scam and find out how to protect yourself.
Recent Text Message Scam - Please be aware of a recent text message scam circulating in the area. Victims have reported that they are receiving text messages claiming to be from their Financial Institution notifying them that their debit card is blocked. They will likely ask you to reply to the message or call and verify your debit card number. These are fraudulent messages. Central Bank and Trust Co. will not text you and ask you to verify your card number.
We currently have a service which monitors card activity for red flags. You may receive a call to verify large or unusual transactions. If we are unable to verify these transactions, your card will be blocked until we can verify the activity. We will not call or text to ask you to verify your card information. If a lost or stolen card is reported to a branch location over the phone, we may ask you to come into a branch in order to dispute charges and/or request a new card.
If you have any questions regarding this notice or other scams, please contact us.