Phishing - Avoid Becoming A Victim
Facts you should know.
Criminals are constantly improving their methods of stealing your personal financial information through fraudulent e-mails and web sites designed to appear as though they were generated from legitimate businesses, financial institutions and even government agencies. This criminal activity is known as "phishing." They are literally fishing for your personal information. This information is money in their pockets.
Grammatical errors and poor web site quality used to be common identifiers of these phishing web sites. Errors are not as common as before. Criminals improve their techniques with time, and this is evident in newer phishing messages.
This article will educate you on these scams, provide suggestions on how to avoid becoming a victim, and provide information on steps to take should you become a victim of phishing.
Avoiding the Scams
- Never provide any personal information to
an inquiry that is originated by someone else. Do not respond
to email inquiries even if they appear to be from a legitimate
source. Capital Bank of New Jersey, or other financial institutions,
business or government agency will request you to confirm personal
information. Capital Bank of New Jersey, and these other organisations
already have that information if you have conducted business
with them before. Do not provide social security numbers, account
numbers, credit card numbers, passwords, user name, etc
use a secure web site when submitting credit card or other personal
information in transactions that you initiate.
- Monitor your bank,
credit card and other accounts regularly to ensure that all transactions
- Be suspicious of any email notifications requiring
you to act immediately to prevent an account being closed or
voided. Don't be intimidated!
- Protect your social security number.
- Don't use links that are provided in any suspicious emails.
security patches and be sure your browser is up to date.
your bank or other business if you become suspicious of any e-mail
alleging to come from them.
- Report suspicious e-mail or phone
activity to the Federal Trade Commission by using the FTC's Identity
- By telephone: 1-877-IDTHEFT (438-4338)
- Online at http://www.consumer.gov/idtheft
mail at Identity Theft Clearinghouse, Federal Trade Commission,
600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington DC 20580
- Sign up for
the National Do Not Call Registry via the FTC's website http://www.donotcall.gov or via their toll-free hotline 1-888-382-1222
- The State of
New Jersey has a comprehensive Do Not Call website - http://www.state.nj.us/donotcall .
The law allows the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs to
utilize the New Jersey telephone numbers on the federal “Do Not
Call” registry to establish a State-specific no telemarketing
call list. That means anyone who has signed up for the federal
registry is automatically placed on the State’s list and
covered under the law. You are not required to register again
with New Jersey. You may contact Consumer Affairs at 888-NJNOCALL
(888-656-6225) or log onto http://www.njconsumeraffairs.com for
a complaint form.
- Monitor your credit report at least annually.
Advice for Victims of Phishing
- Contact your financial institution(s) immediately.
- Contact one
of the three major credit bureaus and request that a fraud alert
be placed on your credit reports. Request a free copy of your
credit reports. The law allows this free report once a year.
Click here for the contact information for Equifax, Experian,
- Using the websites and/or telephone numbers
above, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and
the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs.
- Review all billing
and bank statements immediately for accuracy.
- Close any affected
accounts and open new ones.
- Contact local enforcement and file
a police report.
- Contact the Social
Security Administration if
your SS number has been compromised. (They have a very useful
and informative page regarding
Theft and your SS Number.)
- Document your activity.
- "Lotteries" or "sweepstakes" advise
you that you have won money but they require money from you up
front to buy something , or to somehow ensure your chances of receiving
- Buyers of something you have advertised for sale
that insist on mailing payment via cashier's check. Many times
the check is for an amount larger than the purchased price, and
the buyer requests that the overage be sent back to him via money
order. The cashier's check is counterfeit.
- "Sponsors" or "charities" will
push for contributions but will be reluctant to provide identifying
information about themselves when questioned.
- The Nigerian and other similar scam letters, e-mails or faxes are from someone purporting to have money in his country that cannot be accessed because of "rules and regulations." You are to be rewarded handsomely for your help getting this money back. All you have to do is to provide your bank account information and money up front to take care of "necessary expenses." You are, of course, asked to keep this plot a secret. Once they have drained all the money they can from you, you never hear from them again.
Protect Your Personal Information.
Criminals want your personal account information and social security number. They can make huge profits at your expense. Don't give them your information, Be suspicious of any electronic messages, phone calls or mail requests that ask for personal data. Find out more about phishing and other crimes at:
- Anti Phishing Work Group
- Federal Trade Commission
- Department of Justice Fraud Section
- Identity Theft Resource Center
Call 856.690.1234 for our current business and personal banking rates.