Fraudulent Text Messages
Beware of fraudulent text messages coming to your Smartphone. These fraudulent messages falsely alarm consumers about suspicious activity on credit cards, applications for credit, loan payments, etc.
Fraudulent text messages appear to come from legitimate sources. They aim to gather personal, financial and sensitive information for the purpose of identity theft. As a result, consumers are tricked by these deceptive solicitations into providing personal information including passwords. FirstAtlantic Bank will never send you a text or email asking for personal financial information. It’s always best to telephone the company that you are doing business with to confirm the authenticity of the text message.
Tax Season Scams
FirstAtlantic Bank has become aware of a new email phishing scam in which the email appears to come from the IRS. The email encourages the recipient to either respond with confidential information (social security number, passwords, date of birth, etc.) or click on a link or attachment which will infect the computer of the recipient. This scam has also been conducted via a phone call.
It is important to remember that neither the IRS nor FirstAtlantic Bank will initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text messages, or social media channels to request personal or financial information. This includes requests for PIN numbers, passwords or similar access information for credit cards, banks or other financial accounts.
For more information regarding phone and e-mail scams that are common during the tax season, visit the IRS website on reporting online scams here: www.irs.gov/uac/Report-Phishing.
Additionally, there is often a wave of fake Federal and State tax returns that are filed using popular tax reporting software by unauthorized third parties. Evidence suggests that the victims may have had their login information stolen from other sources. To avoid this happening to you, FirstAtlantic Bank recommends that all users have their personal computer protected by antivirus and anti-malware software and to regularly scan for viruses and other computer infections. It is also important for users to change their password regularly for all online services that contain confidential information, including online banking services.
Tax identity theft occurs when someone steals your personal information and then uses your Social Security number to file a phony tax return in your name in order to claim a refund. The refund is then sent to the individual committing the fraud. When this happens, your legitimate refund request will be denied since IRS records show you’ve already been given a refund.
If you become a victim of tax identity fraud, the IRS will issue you a PIN that must be included when you file your tax return. This tells the agency that you are the actual taxpayer assigned to that Social Security number. If you have reason to believe that you may be a victim of identity theft, you should file a paper return and include a Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit, which can be found at www.irs.gov or ensure that your tax preparer is aware of the possibility so that they can file the appropriate paperwork for you.
The IRS has set up a YouTube page with videos that cover how to protect yourself from these and other vulnerabilities which you can visit at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL388D1AC3B539E4F1.
For more information on identity protection and tax theft prevention, visit the IRS website at http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Identity-Protection.
Tech Support Phone Scam
Reports of a phone scam where the caller claims to be a representative with Microsoft Technical Support are on the rise. This scam, which has been around for several years, uses social engineering to allow the scammer access to the victims computer so that they may make changes to it and hold the computer hostage. FIrstAtlantic Bank would like to remind you that Microsoft, and almost all other technology companies, will not initiate a call for technical support. Instead, it is assumed that the customers will reach out to them if they are experiencing issues.
Microsoft has created this website to help customers and victims of this scam.
Fiserv E-mail Containing .Zip Attachment
On Sept. 6th, a FirstAtlantic Bank customer contacted a customer service representative to inquire about the legitimacy of an e-mail they received. The e-mail appears to come from Fiserv, who is a service provider of FirstAtlantic Bank. The e-mail contains a .zip attachment and claims that it is a secure message from Fiserv. While the “from” address of the e-mail says @fiserv.com, this is a spoofed e-mail. This e-mail is NOT legitimate.
If you received this e-mail, customers are advised to take the following actions:
- Do NOT open the attachment.
- Delete the e-mail permanently (from the inbox and deleted items)
If you received the e-mail and opened the attachment, your computer may be infected by malicious software. We strongly recommend the following if the attachment was opened:
Update your antivirus and antmalware software and scan your computer for infections.
- If infections are found, ensure that they are successfully removed from your computer.
- If your computer may be infected, do not use it to access your Online Bank accounts until you are confident the infection has been removed.
- If you logged into your Online Banking account from a computer you believe to be infected, contact your branch Customer Service Representative for assistance in changing your password and/or disabling your Online Banking account.
- If you are unable to clear the infection, contact a Computer Repair company for assistance.
- Check your account often for fraudulent charges.
Debit Card Phone Scam
A phone scam whereby customers receive phone calls stating that their debit cards have been deactivated has been reported recently. In the scam, an automated message tells the customer that their debit card or credit card have been locked, deactivated, or temporarily suspended. The automated message may also ask customers to press 1 to unlock the cards. The message may vary for each call. The phone calls are usually generic, and they don’t specifically state that the customer’s FirstAtlantic Bank card has been suspended.
If you receive a call such as this, please do not share your debit/credit card or personal information or comply with any of the caller’s requests. If possible, please write down the caller’s phone number and report it to your local FirstAtlantic Bank branch or our Corporate office at 904-348-3100.
Be assured that the security of your information is a top priority at FirstAtlantic Bank and we are here to assist if you have any questions as to the authenticity of communications you receive regarding your accounts with us. At no time will you receive an automated message, e-mail or other communication requesting account information from FirstAtlantic Bank.
Information on Phishing
When someone impersonates a business to deceive you into giving out your personal information, it is called phishing. It is important that you do not reply to email, text, or pop-up messages that ask for your personal or financial information. It is equally as important that you do not click on links within email, text, or pop up messages; even if the message appears to be from an organization you trust. Legitimate businesses will not ask you to send sensitive, personal information through insecure channels. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call us at 904-348-3100.
The government has a website at www.IC3.gov with more information which includes the following tips:
- Be suspicious of any unsolicited email requesting personal information.
- Avoid filling out forms in email messages that ask for personal information.
- Always compare the link in the email to the link that you are actually directed to.
- Log on to the official website, instead of “linking” to it from an unsolicited email.
- Contact the actual business that supposedly sent the email to verify if the email is genuine.
For information on Preventing ID Theft, please click the link below.
Preventing ID Theft