ONLINE BANKING > Privacy and Security
> Common Scam and Fraud
Phishing and Spoofing
Through the use of fraudulent emails, Internet thieves attempt to
“phish” for your confidential information. What they want are account
numbers, passwords, Social Security numbers, and other confidential
information that they can use to loot your bank accounts or run up bills
on your credit cards. With the sensitive information obtained from a
successful Phishing scam, identity thieves can do damage to your
financial history and personal reputation that can take years to
Often times the fake email disguised as legitimate business or
organization that you may deal with, e.g., an Internet service provider,
online payment service, e-Bay, or even a government agency such as the
IRS or FBI. They often include company logos that look real. It entices
you to visit a “spoof” (phony) Website that encourages you to divulge
sensitive information. Additionally, some Phishing emails will attempt
to install software on your computer (commonly known as “spyware”) to
capture your keystrokes so that thieves may obtain confidential
information like login IDs and passwords.
Always keep in mind that New Omni Bank, N.A., will not send you
unsolicited emails with embedded links or pop-up windows that ask for
confidential information. We will never ask you to provide personal
information or account information via our Web site or by email. If you
ever receive a suspicious request for confidential information that
purports to be from New Omni Bank, N.A., do not respond to it and do not
click on any links that it provides. Report the request to any of our
Customer Relationship Personnel or Operations Officer at any of our
Fake emails will often:
- Contain urgent or threatening appeal for personal
information. Fake emails often claim that your information has
been compromised, that your account has been frozen, or ask you to
confirm the authenticity of your transaction. Another example is
that it may claim that your account may be closed if you fail to
confirm, verify, or authenticate your personal information
immediately. New Omni Bank, N.A., and most other financial institutions
will not ask you to verify information in this way.
- Urgent request for security information. Fake emails
often claim that the bank has lost important security information
and needs to update it online. Or, the email may warn you of a
serious problem that requires your immediate attention. It may use
phrases such as “immediate attention required,” or “Please contact
us immediately about your account.” The e-mail will then encourage
you to click on a button to go to the bank’s Web site.
In either case, you may be asked to update your account information
or to provide information for verification purposes: your Social
Security Number, your account number, your password, or the
information you use to verify your identity when speaking to a real
financial institution, such as your mother’s maiden name or your
place of birth.
If you provide the requested information, you may find yourself the
victim of identity theft. New Omni Bank, N.A., and most other financial
institutions will not ask you to verify information in this way.
- Appear to be from a legitimate source. While some emails
are easy to identify as fraudulent, others may appear to be from a
legitimate address and trusted online source. However, you should
not rely on the name or address in the “From” field, as this is
- Contain fraudulent job offers. Some fake emails appear to
be from companies offering jobs. These are often work-at-home
accounting positions which are actually schemes that victimize both
the job applicants and other customers. Be sure to confirm that the
job offer is from a known and trusted company.
- Contain prizes or gift certificate offers. Some fake
emails promise a prize or gift certificate in exchange for
completing a survey or answering questions. In order to collect the
alleged prize or gift certificate you may be directed to provide
your personal information. Just like with job offers, be sure to
confirm that prize or gift certificate is being issued from a known
and trusted company.
- Too-good-to-be-true offers are often just that. Don’t get
mixed up in fraudulent activities by believing emails or Web
advertisements that offer to help you earn money by transferring
- Link to “spoof” Web sites. Fake emails may direct to
counterfeit Web sites carefully designed to look real, but which
actually collect personal information for illegal use.
- Contain fraudulent phone numbers. Fake emails often
contain telephone numbers that are tied to Internet thieves. Never
call a number featured on an email you suspect is fraudulent, and be
sure to double-check any numbers you do call (e.g., using the phone
- Contain real phone numbers. Some of the telephone numbers
listed in fake emails may be legitimate, connecting to actual
companies. Just like with links, Internet thieves include the real
phone numbers in an effort to make the email appear to be
- Contain typo and other errors that are often the mark of
fraudulent emails or websites. Be on the lookout for: typographical
or grammatical errors; awkward, stilted, or inappropriate writing;
and poor visual or design quality.
How is my email address obtained
Email addresses can be obtained from publicly available sources or
through randomly generated lists. Therefore, if you receive a fake email
that appears to be from New Omni Bank, N.A., this does not mean that your
email address, name, or any other information has been taken from New Omni
Spoof (Counterfeit) Web Site
Online thieves often direct you to fraudulent Web sites via email and
pop-up windows and try to collect your personal information. In many
cases there is no easy way to determine that you are on a phony Web site
because the URL (Uniform or Universal Resource Locator) will contain the
name of the institution it is spoofing. However, if you type, or cut and
paste, the URL into a new Web browser window and it does not take you to
a legitimate Web site, or you get an error message, it was probably just
a cover for a fake Web site.
How can I protect myself
With a few simple steps, you can help protect your bank accounts and
personal information from fake emails and Web sites.
- Delete suspicious emails without opening them. If you do open a
suspicious email, do not open any attachments or click on any links
it may contain.
- Never provide sensitive account or personal information in
response to an email. If you have entered personal information,
contact us immediately.
- Install and regularly update virus protection software.
- Keep your computer operating system and Web browser current.
Spyware, Viruses, and Malware
Spyware, viruses, and malware are malicious programs that are loaded
onto your computer without your knowledge.
- Spyware is designed to allow unauthorized access to computer
systems. Spyware can be used to steal your personal information.
Some spyware programs can detect the numbers and letters you enter
on your keyboard such as passwords.
- Viruses are designed to make copies of themselves, quickly using
up your computer’s memory. Some viruses can transmit across computer
- Malware (Malicious software). Viruses and “Trojans” (latent
malicious code or devices that secretly capture data) on your
personal computer may intercept your request to visit a particular
site, such as anybank.com, and redirect you to the spoof site that
the Internet thief has set up.
Protecting against viruses, spyware and malware
- Anti-spyware protection. Make sure your computer has an anti-spyware
protection program that detects and removes all forms of spyware,
which can steal vital information. Use this program to scan your
computer frequently. Many software companies offer software that
will protect you from a wide variety of spyware threats, and also
will provide customer service in case you have questions. To keep up
with any new threats, be sure to keep your anti-spyware program
- Anti-virus protection. Make sure your computer has an anti-virus
protection program that detects and removes viruses. Software from
major providers will protect you from a wide variety of threats, and
also will provide customer service in case you have questions. Be
sure to always keep your anti-virus program updated.
- Automatic upgrades. Buy a protection program that automatically
upgrades your spyware or virus protection on a recurring basis. If
you don’t have this automatic upgrade feature, make sure you update
your spyware and virus detection programs weekly, as well as
whenever you hear of a new computer threat.
- Attachments. Don’t open attachments, diskettes, or CDs unless
you are sure that you can trust the source. Learn how to manually
screen diskettes, CDs, and attachments if your anti-virus software
doesn’t automatically do so.
- Contact your ISP. Your Internet service provider (ISP) may have
more recommendations and technical support for protecting yourself.
Contact your ISP for recommendations specific to your computer and
Pop-ups are the small advertisements that “pop-up” in a separate browser
window on your screen. When you download material from the Internet, it
is possible that you are also downloading “spyware” and/or “adware” that
generate these ads.
Sometimes, criminals create pop-up ads that look like they come from a
respected financial institution and ask you to enter personal financial
information. Do not enter any personal financial information in these
ads. New Omni Bank, N.A. and most other financial institutions will not ask
you to verify personal financial information in pop-ups.
Additionally, some pop-ups will appear to “detect” spyware or viruses on
your computer. At best, these are advertisements to direct you to sites
where you may purchase software to combat these problems. At worst,
these pop-ups may actually lead you to install these unwanted computer
Protecting against pop-up advertisements
- Immediately close any pop-up ad windows. Do not enter
information or respond in any way.
- Activate a pop-up blocking tool. There are many companies
that offer pop-up blocking software, and many Internet browser
companies are starting to integrate pop-up blocking tools into the
newer versions of their products.
If You Accidentally Click on a Fraudulent Link
If you accidentally clicked and followed the link and provided any
information, please CONTACT US immediately. Your account may be
compromised, and you may want to close your existing account and open a
new one. In addition,
- Call the three major credit bureaus to request that a fraud
alert to be placed on your credit report or to seek for appropriate
Equifax at (800) 525-6285 or www.equifax.com
Experian at (888) 397-3742 or www.experian.com
TransUnion at (800) 680-7289 or
- Report any suspicious activities immediately. Scrutinize any
charges on your account statements carefully to ensure that they are
legitimate. If there is a questionable transaction or a fraudulent
transaction, report it right away.
- Contact your local police department. Financial fraud is a
- Call the Federal Trade Commission’s ID Theft hotline at (877)
IDTHEFT to report it. The FTC will take a report, notify law
enforcement officials and offer advice.
- Notify the Postal Inspector if you suspect mail theft. It is a
- Contact the Social Security Administration to get a new Social
Security number if you believe it is being used by a thief.
- Keep detailed notes of your repair efforts.