CUSTOMER AWARENESS AND EDUCATION PROGRAM

 

PURPOSE

The purpose of our Customer Awareness and Education Program is to ensure that our electronic banking customers are aware of the risks associated with using electronic banking services.  Security measures are critical in protecting our customers from becoming victims of fraud.

This program supplies our customers with essential security tips as well as additional resources and guidelines to follow if you believe your information has been compromised.

 

UNSOLICITED CUSTOMER CONTACT

Fraudulent emails may be designed to appear as though they are originated by Franklin Bank.  Do not respond to any type of communications which request any type of personal or confidential information and do not go to any links listed on that email.  We will NEVER contact you and ask for your debit/credit card number or your full social security number.  If we do contact you, it will always be done in a manner that protects your personal, confidential information and we will clearly identify ourselves.  If you are unsure, please feel free to contact us so we can assist you.

Franklin Bank will NEVER contact its customers on an unsolicited basis by way of phone, email, text, etc. and request your logon credentials such as password or personal identification number (PIN).

If you do receive a request of this type, do not give any personal information.  Call us immediately at (856) 769-4400 to report the incident.

Franklin Bank will only contact its customers regarding online banking activity on an unsolicited basis for the following reasons:

  • Suspected fraudulent activity on your account
  • Inactive/dormant account
  • To notify you of a change or disruption in service
  • To confirm changes submitted to your online banking profile
If you receive an unsolicited contact from Franklin Bank for any reason not cited above, your identity will be confirmed through a series of security questions.

 

INTERNET BANKING SECURITY

Franklin Bank uses the latest technology with multi-layer security to protect your confidential information.  In addition, we strongly suggest you follow the guidelines below to keep your online banking information safe:
 
Choose Strong and Unique Passwords
 
You may not realize that your choice of password can create an opening for hackers.  See the list below of some of the most common mistakes you may be making with online banking passwords:
  • Using personal information, such as your name, address or date of birth
  • Choosing shorter passwords
  • Relying on common words or simple number combinations
  • Using the same password for multiple logins
  • Not updating passwords regularly
While doing those things can make remembering passwords easier, they also make it easier for hackers to guess your password and access your online banking information.  Here are some tips for creating stronger passwords for using electronic banking:
  • Choose longer passwords, such as a phrase rather than a single word
  • Use a mix of upper and lowercase letters
  • Include numbers and special characters
  • Avoid common sequences, such as 1234
  • Avoid using personal information, such as your name, pet’s names, date of birth, etc.  This type of information is easily found on social media
  • Don’t store your login details in your online banking or mobile app
  • Consider using a password manager to store and protect your passwords
Avoid Public Wi-Fi Connections
 
Some of the biggest security risks posed by public Wi-Fi include:
  • Man-in-the-middle attacks, in which hackers are able to electronically “eavesdrop” on your banking and other online activity
  • Data transmissions over unencrypted networks
  • Malicious hotspots
  • Malware and spyware
If you do have to use a public internet to access your online banking, there are a few things you can do to help stay secure.  These include disabling public file sharing and sticking with sites that are encrypted.  An easy way to check for encryption is to look for “https” in the site’s URL, which also triggers the lock icon to the left of the URL in your browser.  Your laptop or mobile device’s firewall may automatically flag sites that are deemed unsafe for you.

 

Mobile Banking Tips

 

7 online and mobile banking safety tips

 

Millions of Americans use online and mobile banking to manage their financial lives. While the service is convenient, is it safe? Ken Tumin, founder of DepositAccounts.com says if consumers take reasonable precautions, their information should be secure. He suggests following these seven steps:

Set strong passwords

Tumin says passwords for your online and mobile accounts should be long, complex and not easily guessed by thieves.  If fingerprint or face ID is available to you, make sure you use it.

Use a secure network connection

Never use public Wi-Fi to conduct any financial transactions.
“Criminals could intercept the communications and be able to take things like your password and login information,” Tumin says.
If you do decide to use public Wi-Fi, he says you should use a virtual private network or VPN to ensure your connection is secure and your data is encrypted.

Install updates regularly

Make sure the operating system on your smartphone and PC is up to date with the latest upgrades.
“A lot of those upgrades include updates to their security to fill in any holes that might exist,” he says.

Run security software

DepositAccounts.com says some mobile phone users do not consider security software as important for their devices as they do for their computers. Tumin says owners of PC’s and Android mobile phones need that added level of security.
“Security software including anti-virus and anti-malware can be used to make sure that doesn’t infect your computers,” he says. “iPhones don’t have those same issues.” 

Sign up for protection

Monitor your account for any suspicious activity by signing up for fraud monitoring or identity protection services.
“If someone is pulling your credit or applying for a credit card, for example, those kinds of monitoring systems would be able to alert you,” Tumin says.

Use a security-focused bank

Tumin advises consumers to choose a bank that makes security a priority. What protections and features do they provide? How secure is their mobile app? How do they authenticate you when you log in? 

Monitor your accounts

Review your statements monthly. If there are any unauthorized transactions, report them to your bank immediately.
“If you do that as the last line of defense, that will make sure you are protected should anything happen,” Tumin says.

 

Be Aware of Phishing Scams

From the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency:

What is a Phishing Attack?  Phishing is a form of social engineering.  Phishing attacks use email or malicious websites to solicit personal information by posing as a trustworthy organization.  For example, an attacker may send email seemingly from a reputable credit card company or financial institution that requests account information, often suggesting that there is a problem.  When users respond with the requested information, attackers can use it to gain access to the accounts.

What are common indicators of phishing attempts? 

  • Suspicious sender’s address

    • The sender’s address may imitate a legitimate business. Cybercriminals often use an email address that closely resembles one from a reputable company by altering or omitting a few characters.

  • Generic greetings and signature

    • Both a generic greeting – such as “Dear Valued Customer” or “Sir/Ma’am” – and a lack of contact information in the signature block are strong indicators of a phishing email. A trusted organization will normally address you by name and provide their contact information.

  • Spoofed hyperlinks and websites

    • If you hover your cursor over any links in the body of the email, and the links do not match the text that appears when hovering over them, the link may be spoofed. Malicious websites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the URL may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (e.g., .com vs. .net). Additionally, cybercriminals may use a URL shortening service to hide the true destination of the link.

  • Spelling and layout

    • Poor grammar and sentence structure, misspellings, and inconsistent formatting are other indicators of a possible phishing attempt. Reputable institutions have dedicated personnel that produce, verify, and proofread customer correspondence.

  • Suspicious attachments

    • An unsolicited email requesting a user download and open an attachment is a common delivery mechanism for malware. A cybercriminal may use a false sense of urgency or importance to help persuade a user to download or open an attachment without examining it first.

How do you avoid being a victim?

  • Be suspicious of unsolicited phone calls, visits, or email messages from individuals asking about employees or other internal information. If an unknown individual claims to be from a legitimate organization, try to verify his or her identity directly with the company.

  • Do not provide personal information or information about your organization, including its structure or networks, unless you are certain of a person's authority to have the information.

  • Do not reveal personal or financial information in email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information. This includes following links sent in email.

  • Don't send sensitive information over the internet before checking a website's security.

    • Pay attention to the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) of a website. Look for URLs that begin with "https" — an indication that sites are secure — rather than "http.”

    • Look for a closed padlock icon — a sign your information will be encrypted.

  • If you are unsure whether an email request is legitimate, try to verify it by contacting the company directly. Do not use contact information provided on a website connected to the request; instead, check previous statements for contact information.

  • Install and maintain anti-virus software, firewalls, and email filters to reduce some of this traffic.

  • Take advantage of any anti-phishing features offered by your email client and web browser.

  • Enforce multi-factor authentication (MFA).

What do you do if you think you are a victim?

  • If you downloaded a fraudulent attachment, turn off Wi-Fi and disconnect from the internet immediately.

  • If you clicked on a link to a fraudulent website, try to remember exactly what information (username, password, address) you entered. Take screenshots of the phishing email or jot down details such as the sender’s email address, the content of the email, and the URL that you clicked.

  • Immediately change any passwords you might have revealed. If you used the same password for multiple resources, make sure to change it for each account, and do not use that password in the future.

  • Contact the organization that was spoofed. Report the phishing scheme to the company that the phisher impersonated. Let the company know that you changed your password, and follow their instructions for safeguarding your information and your account. If you gave out financial information, contact your bank as soon as possible.

  • Scan your computer for viruses. Whether you downloaded an attachment or clicked on a link, it’s a good idea to scan your computer for viruses and malware. Anti-virus software can examine your computer, alerting you to any files that may have been infected. If you’re still not sure if your computer is free of malware, consider hiring an expert to help you.

  • Watch for other signs of identity theft. Keep a close eye on you bank and credit card statements, looking for any withdrawals or purchases that you didn’t authorize.

  • Notify the three major credit reporting agencies that your information was compromised. You may want to place a fraud alert on your credit report.


Credit Bureau Contacts

Contact the national credit bureaus to request fraud alerts, credit freezes (also known as security freezes), and opt outs from pre-screened credit offers.

Equifax

Equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services
Order a Report:  800-685-1111    Report Fraud:  800-525-6285

 

Experian

Experian.com/help
Order a Report OR Report Fraud:  888-EXPERIAN (888-397-3742) 

  

TransUnion

TransUnion.com/credit-help
Report Fraud:  800-680-7289     General Support:  833-395-6938

 

 

What is Identity Theft?

 

Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personal information such as your Social Security  number, account number or credit card number, without your permission, to commit fraud or other crimes. Protect yourself by:

 

• Reporting lost or stolen checks or credit cards immediately 

• NEVER give out any personal information 

• Shred all documentation that contains confidential information (i.e. bank and credit card 

statements, bills and invoices that contain personal information, expired credit cards and 
pay-stubs).

        •     Check your credit report annually

 

Federal Trade Commission: IdentityTheft.gov

Warning Signs of Identity Theft

What Do Thieves Do With Your Information?

Once identity thieves have your personal information, they can drain your bank account, run up charges on your credit cards, open new utility accounts, or get medical treatment on your health insurance. An identity thief can file a tax refund in your name and get your refund. In some extreme cases, a thief might even give your name to the police during an arrest.

Clues That Someone Has Stolen Your Information

  • You see withdrawals from your bank account that you can’t explain.

  • You don’t get your bills or other mail.

  • Merchants refuse your checks.

  • Debt collectors call you about debts that aren’t yours.

  • You find unfamiliar accounts or charges on your credit report.

  • Medical providers bill you for services you didn’t use.

  • Your health plan rejects your legitimate medical claim because the records show you’ve reached your benefits limit.

  • A health plan won’t cover you because your medical records show a condition you don’t have.

  • The IRS notifies you that more than one tax return was filed in your name, or that you have income from an employer you don’t work for.

  • You get notice that your information was compromised by a data breach at a company where you do business or have an account.

If your wallet, Social Security number, or other personal information is lost or stolen, there are steps you can take to help protect yourself from identity theft.

 

For more information about identity theft and other tips on how to protect yourself and your information please visit the following websites:

Computer Security: www.onguardonline.gov

Federal Trade Commission: www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft

FDIC Consumer Assistance: www.fdic.gov/consumers/assistance

United States Department of Justice: www.usdoj.gov/criminal/fraud

 

REGULATION E: ELECTRONIC FUND TRANSFERS

What is an EFT?

An EFT is any transfer of funds that is initiated through an electronic terminal, telephone, computer, or magnetic tape for the purpose of ordering, instructing, or authorizing a financial institution to debit or credit a consumer’s account. The term includes but is not limited to:

  • Point of sale transfers
  • (ATM) Automated teller machine transfers
  • Direct deposits or withdrawals of funds
  • Transfers initiated by telephone
  • Transfers resulting from debit card transactions, whether or not initiated through an electronic terminal
  • Transfers initiated through internet banking and bill pay
  • Electronic Check Conversion

How does Regulation E apply to a consumer using Online Banking and/or Bill Pay?

Regulation E is a consumer protection law for accounts such as checking or savings, established primarily for personal, family, or household purposes. Regulation E provides consumers a means to notify their financial institution that an EFT has been made to their account without their permission. If you are unsure if your account is protected by Regulation E contact us.

Business/Commercial customers are not covered by Regulation E.  As a result, it is critical that business/commercial customers implement sound security practices within their places of business.  For information on how to keep your business secure, please see our 'Keeping Your Business Secure' tab under the Business heading on our home page.

Refer to Franklin’s Account Rules and Agreements disclosure for more information regarding your rights under the regulation.  You may view the disclosure by clicking here.

Unauthorized Transactions

If you suspect there have been unauthorized transactions involving your accounts, it could be a result of identity theft or a lost or stolen debit card. In these cases, you have recourse under the EFTA.

Through the act, you have 60 days to report an unauthorized transaction to your financial institution. The time limit begins on the date of the first periodic statement which contains the transaction. The institution has no obligation to conduct an investigation if you miss the 60-day deadline.

If you believe an unauthorized EFT has been made on your account, contact us immediately at (856) 769-4400. If you notify us within 2 business days after you learn of the loss or theft of your ATM/debit card or Personal Identification Number (PIN), the most you can lose is $50. Failure to notify the bank within 2 business days may result in additional losses. 

 

Unlimited Liability

Unlimited loss to a consumer account can occur if: 

• The periodic statement reflects an unauthorized transfer of money from your account, and you fail to report the unauthorized transfer to us within 60 days after we mailed your first statement on which the problem or error appeared

If you don’t report a loss within 60 days you risk unlimited loss.

Once notified, the financial institution has 10 business days to conduct an investigation of the claim. The institution must tell you the results within three days of concluding its investigation. If a mistake was made, the institution must correct it within one business day. Occasionally, banks can take up to 45 days to conduct the investigation, but in these cases, the bank has to give the disputed money back to you until the process is over.

Regulation E Coverage in Detail 

For a complete detailed explanation of protections provided under Regulation E, please visit the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB’s) website: 

• CFPB Electronic Funds Transfers Act (Regulation E)
http://www.consumerfinance.gov/eregulations/1005
  

 

 

ELECTRONIC BANKING SAFETY TIPS 

ATM and Debit Card Safety

Treat your card like cash. Always store your card in a safe place.

Keep your PIN a secret. ATM transactions and PIN debit purchases require the use of a secret code known as a personal identification number or PIN. Memorize your PIN, and never write it on your card or store it with your card. Never let someone else enter your PIN for you.

Do not disclose information about your card over the telephone. No company or individual needs to know your PIN…not even your financial institution. If you perform transactions over the telephone using your ATM or debit card, never disclose your PIN.

Never disclose information about your card in response to an unsolicited e-mail or request. E-mail is a common channel for fraud perpetration. Never provide your debit or credit card number, PIN or any other non-public personal information to any entity in response to an unsolicited e-mail or request. Your financial institution will never ask you for your PIN.

Make certain your Internet shopping sites are secure. Look for secure transaction symbols when shopping online to ensure your account information is protected. Secure websites can be identified by "https". Always log off from any site after you make a purchase. If you can’t log off, shut down your browser to prevent unauthorized access to your account information.

Protect your card’s magnetic stripe. Do not expose your card’s magnetic stripe to magnetic objects. Magnetic objects can damage your card.

Report a lost or stolen card at once. Immediately call your financial institution if your card is lost or stolen to reduce the chance that it will be used improperly. Immediate notice of lost or stolen cards will also limit your potential liability for unauthorized transactions.

Review your account statements for unauthorized transactions. Review all account statements from your financial institution promptly, and report any errors (including transactions you believe may be unauthorized) as soon as possible. Prompt notification will limit your potential liability for unauthorized transactions.


Walk-Up ATM Safety

Always observe the ATM surroundings before conducting a transaction. If anyone or anything appears to be suspicious, leave the area at once. If you drive to an ATM, park as close as possible to the terminal. Observe the entire area from the safety of your car before getting out.

If an ATM is obstructed from your view or poorly lit, go to another ATM. If possible, report the problem to the ATM operator or your own financial institution.

It is a good idea to take another person with you when using an ATM, especially at night.

Minimize the time spent at the ATM when conducting a transaction. Have your card out and ready to use. Do not allow a stranger to assist you in making a transaction, even if you have trouble or your card gets stuck. When your transaction is complete, put your card, money and receipt away and immediately leave the area. Never count your money while at the ATM.

Block the view of others when using the ATM. Stand between the ATM and anyone waiting to use the terminal. Shield the keypad as necessary when entering your PIN and transaction amount.

If you see anyone or anything suspicious, cancel your transaction and leave the area at once. If anyone follows you, go immediately to a crowded, well-lit area and call the police.

Look for possible fraudulent devices attached to the ATM. If the ATM appears to have any attachments or alterations to the card slot or keypad, do not use the ATM. If possible, report the problem to the ATM operator or your own financial institution.


Drive-Up ATM Safety

  • Keep your doors locked, windows up and engine running when in line at a drive-up ATM.

  • Always leave enough room between vehicles to allow for a quick exit should it become necessary.

  • Before rolling down the window to use an ATM, observe the entire area.

  • Minimize the time spent at the ATM.

  • If anyone or anything appears suspicious, cancel your transaction and drive away at once.

  • If anyone follows you after making an ATM transaction, drive immediately to a crowded, well-lit area and call the police.


PIN Debit Safety

  • Never allow the cashier or any other person to enter your PIN for you, even if they are assisting you with the transaction. Always keep your PIN a secret.

  • Block the view of others when using a PIN debit terminal.

  • Be certain the transaction is complete and review your receipt before leaving.

  • If you receive cash back from a transaction put it away before leaving.

  • When using an outdoor terminal such as at a gas station, always observe your surroundings before making a transaction.

  • When using an outdoor terminal, if anyone or anything appears to be suspicious, leave the area at once.

  • It is a good idea to take another person with you when using an outdoor PIN debit terminal at night.

  • If anyone follows you after conducting a PIN debit transaction, proceed immediately to a crowded, well-lit area and call the police.

     

    For more information on Franklin Bank’s debit and credit cards, please visit our website at www.franklinbnk.com or click here:  https://www.franklinbnk.com/home/services

 

Franklin Bank neither endorses nor guarantees in any way the organizations, services, or advice associated with any link found on this page.  Franklin Bank is not responsible for the accuracy of the content found on these sites.