If you have recently purchased or refinanced your home, you may have received this postcard from a company called Mortgage Protection Services. This is a scam. Do not call the phone number listed.
QUICK TIPS TO PROTECTING YOUR IDENTITY
- Beware of scams. Do not respond to any phone call, e-mail or social media requests for sensitive information. Thieves use these tactics to trick consumers into voluntarily providing information that can be used to commit fraud. If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, end the call or delete the e-mail and immediately place your own call to the institution in question. First Advantage Bank will never contact a customer unsolicited with a request for account information.
- Use extra caution around tax season, as noted by the IRS here.
- Carry only what is necessary. Leave your unused credit cards and social security card at home in a secure location. Make photocopies of vital information you carry regularly and store them in a secure place, such as a safe deposit box. Then, if your purse or wallet is lost or stolen, you have contact information and account numbers readily available.
- Update contact information. Be sure your financial institution has current contact information to reach you in case of suspect activity on your account.
- Protect your SSN. Do not give out your social security number, unless absolutely necessary.
- Monitor bank accounts closely. Keep an eye on your checking, savings, credit cards and other accounts. Contact the authorities if you notice any unusual activity, and then contact us.
- Beware of mail fraud. Promptly receive incoming mail and place outgoing mail in a U.S. Postal Service mailbox, instead of your home mailbox. Know your billing and statement cycles and contact the company’s customer service department if you stop receiving your regular bill statements. Consider paperless options for your bills and financial statements.
- Sign up for eStatements. Replace paper statements and checks with electronic versions, if offered by your employer, bank or utility provider or merchant. Sign up for First Advantage Bank eStatements under your online banking options.
- Shred personal documents. Many fraud and identify theft incidents happen as a result of mail and garbage theft. First Advantage Bank holds an annual Shred Day to assist customers in safely discarding important documents.
- Check your credit report. It is possible for a victim to be unaware that someone has used his or her stolen identity until long after the damage is done. You can access your credit report for free once a year by going to www.annualcreditreport.com. To dispute information in your credit report or for problems with the Credit Reporting Agencies, you must contact the following companies directly:
- Equifax: 1-877-576-5734; www.alerts.equifax.com
- Experian: 1-888-397-3742; www.experian.com/fraud
- TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289; www.transunion.com
- Additional Credit Reporting Resources
IF YOU ARE A VICTIM OF IDENTITY THEFT
If you suspect your personal information has been compromised, please take the following steps:
- Call First Advantage Bank immediately so they can take necessary steps to protect your account. 931.552.6176
- File a police report and call the fraud unit of the three credit-reporting agencies.
- Consider placing a victim statement in your credit report.
All First Advantage Bank checking accounts include FREE identityRESTORE?, a full-service identity restoration package that supplies you with the tools you need to recover. Customers must register online at www.eclubonline.net and enter access code TN329695 to use this complimentary benefit.
USE CAUTION ONLINE
- Use complex passwords. Avoid birthdays, pet names, and simple passwords. It is also important to change passwords at least three times a year. Because the most common type of identity theft is theft by someone the victim knows, don’t share your passwords with family members and be mindful of who has access to your personal information.
- Use password variety. Avoid using the exact same login and password for every account so you contain damages if one account is compromised. Don’t write down or share your password with anyone.
- Update passwords regularly.
- Protect your answers to security questions. Choose questions and answers that are easy for you to remember, but hard for others to guess. Do not write down your security questions or answers or share them with anyone. If you have selected security questions on other websites, avoid using the same questions to protect your First Advantage Bank account. Please note that we will never ask you to provide answers to your security questions via email.
- Always log off and close your browser. Always log off from online banking and any website after using your credit or debit card, or other sensitive information. If you cannot log off, close your browser to prevent any potential unauthorized access to your account information.
- Do not store informtion on websites. When websites ask if you want them to remember your debit/credit card information or your login credentials, select "no."
- Only use secure websites. Before you make any online purchases or establish accounts, be sure the website URL begins with https:// and there is a gold padlock icon displayed in the browser address bar. You can always visit a store in person or order by phone if you are uncomfortable buying online.
- Don’t share private information via social media. Avoid using personal details that are used by financial institutions to identify you, such as your birth date, home address, mother’s maiden name, high school name and pet’s name. Fraudsters may use this type of information to help gain access to an account since they are common answers to security questions.
USE CAUTION ON YOUR MOBILE DEVICE
- Safety with mobile browser and text banking.
- If you lose your mobile device or change your phone number, remove the old number from your mobile banking profile by first logging into your online banking account and clicking ‘manage devices’ under the ‘options’ tab or call customer service at 931.552.6176.
- Delete text messages from First Advantage Bank, especially before loaning out, discarding, or selling your mobile device.
- Lock your phone when it is not in use. This function password protects your device and makes it difficult for someone to view your information. Also be sure to store your device in a secure location.
- Never disclose via text, phone call or email your personal or financial information, including account numbers, passwords, Social Security numbers or birth dates.
- Do not store your banking password or other sensitive information on your smartphone where it could be discovered if your phone is stolen.
- Keep your mobile operating system up to date to ensure the highest level of protection. Before downloading an update to your phone make sure to go to the company’s website to confirm the update is legitimate.
- Be cautious using public hotspots. Carefully consider your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connection settings, even at a trusted retailer, as a fraudster can spoof the name of reputable hotspots.
- Safety with mobile apps. Applications or “apps” that let you monitor your finances and conduct certain transactions are increasingly common.
- Download mobile apps from reputable sources to ensure the safety of your personal and account information. We encourage users to download the most recent versions of our apps and keep them updated. Our apps are supported by Android and Apple devices. You can download the First Advantage Mobile Banking app by visiting the associated App Store and searching for “First Advantage Bank”.
- For security, sign off when you finish using your First Advantage Mobile Banking app rather than just closing it.
- Use safety with QR Codes. QR codes, or quick response codes, are barcodes that can be scanned with a mobile device to provide easy access to online information. Just like links in emails, QR codes can be used to send you to websites that may request your personal information or could corrupt your mobile device.
- Treat QR codes with the same suspicion as you would any URL or link you find in an email.
- Use the QR code scanner from a reputable source that will check links for malicious content.
- Use caution on which QR codes to scan as some may have been tampered with if posted in a public place.
USE CAUTION ON YOUR COMPUTER
- Install anti-virus software & a personal firewall.
- Turn your computer off. Do not leave your computer in sleep mode, when you are done using it.
- Avoid downloading programs from unknown sources.
- Beware of using shared computers. Public computers should be used with caution, due to shared use and possible tampering. Online banking activities and viewing or downloading documents should be conducted on a computer you know to be safe and secure.
- Keep your computer up to date. Make sure your computer operating system, software, browser version, and anti-virus software are current. Before downloading an update to a computer program, first go to the company’s website to confirm the update is legitimate.
USE CAUTION WITH E-MAIL
- Beware of fraudulent email and phishing scams. Never open attachments, click on links, or respond to emails from suspicious or unknown senders. Click here to see an example of a fraudulent email.
- Example of email fraud. If you receive a suspicious email that you think is a phish, do not respond or provide any information. If you do respond to a phish email with personal or account information please notify First Advantage Bank at 931.552.6176.