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We are committed to educating our members about online security related issues and will use this page to keep you informed of any cyber threats that we feel may be important. Check back here often for new and updated resources, tips, and helpful links. If you believe that your personal computer has been compromised and are concerned about fraudulent activity on your Allegacy accounts, contact Member Services immediately at 336.774.3400 / 800.782.4670.

Fake Wi-Fi Hotspot
A security company decided it would teach people a lesson and set up several fake Wi-Fi access points around the Republican National Convention site in Cleveland last week.

  • Over the course of a day, more than 1,000 attendees used these open and unprotected Wi-Fi hotspots to check their mail, used smartphone apps, and even played Pokemon while everything they did was looked at by the security researchers. Imagine if they had been bad guys.
  • You should always watch what Wi-Fi hotspots you connect to, and use a VPN (secured connection) to help keep your sensitive information out of the hands of hackers.

ATM Safety tips
Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) are a convenient and easy way for our members to withdraw cash, make deposits, transfer funds, and more. At Allegacy, member safety is a priority and we do our best to ensure your experience is a safe one. Each time you use an ATM, keep the following safety tips (provided by The Electronic Funds Transfer Association) in mind and remember online services are also available to help you with your financial transaction needs.

  • Always pay close attention to the ATM and your surroundings. Select an ATM in well lit location.
  • Maintain an awareness of your surroundings throughout the entire transaction. Be wary of people trying to help you with ATM transactions. Be aware of anyone sitting in a parked car nearby. When leaving an ATM make sure you are not being followed. If you are, drive immediately to a police or fire station, or to a crowded, well lit location or business.
  • Do not use an ATM that appears unusual looking or offers options with which you are not familiar or comfortable.
  • Do not allow people to look over your shoulder as you enter your PIN. Memorize your PIN; never write it on the back of your card. Do not re-enter your PIN if the ATM eats your card -- contact a credit union official.
  • Never count cash at the machine or in public. Wait until you are in your car or another secure place.
  • When using a drive-up ATM, keep your engine running, your doors locked and leave enough room to maneuver between your car and the one ahead of you in the drive-up line.
  • Closely monitor your statements, as well as your balances, and immediately report any problems to your financial institution.
  • If you are involved in a confrontation with an assailant who demands your money, COMPLY.

Source: The Electronic Funds Transfer Association

Security Tips
Keep your personal information safe when you go online.

  • When Allegacy sends email communications to you, we include the last 4-digits of your Member Number in the upper right corner (ex: xxxx1234). This is for your protection and validates that the email originated from Allegacy.
  • We strongly encourage you to use anti-virus and anti-spyware software on your personal computers and keep them updated. We also suggest you set up a firewall and keep your operating system and all software updated with the latest security patches.
  • Allegacy will never contact a member and ask for secure private information. The member must initiate contact with Allegacy before private and secure information will be asked of them.
  • You will never be prompted for sensitive data on our website, including WebBanking. Sensitive data would be full account numbers or complete Social Security Number, passwords, etc.
  • As a general precaution, you should close all other browser sessions and tabs before logging into a banking session.
  • Log off when done with WebBanking, WebMail and Social Media sites.
  • Change your passwords often and never share the password with anyone. Never write passwords or PIN numbers on financial statements, credit cards, Check Cards or ATM cards.
  • Keep personal information personal.
  • Don't open email attachments from anyone unless they are run through an anti-virus program.
  • Don't reply to spam, harassing or offensive email or forward chain email letters.
  • Avoid opening emails from people you don't know. Instead, delete all emails unread.
  • Don't be caught by the spammers' favorite trick, "Remember me?"

Identity Theft Prevention and Assistance
There are several easy actions you can take to protect yourself against identity thieves, both online and in real life.

  • Go paperless! Elect to receive important financial statements online rather than through the mail. Not only is it more secure, but you are doing the environment a favor as well. Login to Allegacy's WebBanking to enroll in eStatements today.
  • Shred any documents containing sensitive personal or financial information before putting them in the trash. If you do not own a shredder, many office supply stores and shipping/printing businesses offer shredding services.
  • Clean out your wallet. Carry only what you need – driver's license, debit card and credit card. Never carry your Social Security card in your wallet. This will minimize the amount of work associated with closing and restoring accounts.
  • Keep a second copy of all your important financial contact information. Photocopy or write down all of the 800-numbers on the backs of your debit and credit cards, and store this somewhere securely away from your wallet.
  • Protect your personal information online. Avoid posting your mailing address or phone number on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter. Thieves can use just a few pieces of key information to steal your identity – and your account information.
  • Enroll in a credit monitoring service through one of the major credit reporting agencies. You will be contacted immediately if they detect suspicious activity.

If you become a victim of identity theft:

  • Place a Fraud Alert with any one of the three credit reporting agencies. They will inform the other two. A Fraud Alert can make it harder for a thief to open more accounts in your name.
  • File a report with the local police department if a physical theft took place (i.e. a break-in at your home or car, robbery, etc.).
  • Contact the financial institutions with which you have accounts that were compromised or may have been compromised (credit card companies, as well as banks or credit unions who you have debit cards with).
  • File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

For immediate and long-term steps to follow after identity theft, as well as what to do in cases of tax-related, child, or medical identity theft, visit the Federal Trade Commission's consumer section on Identity Theft.

More Information about Online Fraud*
Learn about the methods internet criminals use to steal sensitive information and tips for stronger passwords.

Phishing — When fraudsters send emails or use other communication methods to trick members into submitting personal identifying information, such as their usernames or passwords to online credit union accounts. Frequently, these communications will appear to originate from a trustworthy source like the credit union or a government agency.

Pharming — When criminals redirect traffic from one website to a fraudulent site set up to collect members' information. The fake website is designed to look and operate much like the authentic site. The member may then be prompted to "verify their account" by providing information like their credit card and Social Security numbers.

Malware — The term "malware" is short for malicious software. Criminals create emails, websites or other communications to prompt computer users to download the software to their personal computers. The malware then attaches other software, like Trojan horses, which appear to perform tasks the user desires. In reality, the Trojan is attacking the user's computer and, in some cases, steals sensitive information.

Keystroke logger — A type of malicious software that records the keys a user strikes on their keyboard. This is frequently used to monitor what a person types without their knowledge.

Here are some tips for stronger passwords:

  • The longer the better — Make sure passwords have at least eight or more characters.
  • Complexity is key — When possible, use special characters, numbers and symbols when creating passwords.
  • Vary it up — Change passwords often and don't use the same password for everything.
  • No personal info — Avoid using birthdates, spouses' names or similar information.

*Heightened Authentication by National Association of Federal Credit Unions staff writer Chrisalyn Santos

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