Norwood Bank protects your personal information.
Norwood Bank uses state-of-the-art cybersecurity infrastructure to protect your personal and account information. All security, however, from our own personal data to national cybersecurity, is a shared responsibility, and many everyday activities at home, at work and in the public sphere can leave us vulnerable. Here’s what you can do to prevent identity theft, fraud and other cybercrimes.
Has my personal data been stolen?
Thieves can steal your name, address, Social Security number, credit and debit card numbers, utility and other account numbers, passwords and more. Their methods range from low-tech acts like stealing your mail to advanced computer-based activities such as malware that records your passwords when typed on an infected device.
If someone steals your identity, it is important to act fast to limit the damage. But how can you tell if your data has been breached? Here are common warning signs:
- Unexplained bank or credit card activity
- Missing mail, such as bills
- Bills received for goods and services you did not purchase
- Debt collection calls about unexplained debts
- Health insurance service limits reached through unexplained claims
- IRS notification of multiple tax filings for your Social Security number
- Data breaches at companies where you shop
Prevent consumer identity theft
There are several common ways that identity thieves steal personal data. Fortunately, you can protect yourself. Here are the top eight methods of identity theft, and how you can prevent them:
Fraudulent emails designed to obtain your bank login credentials and other personal data are known as phishing scams. Never reply to an email threatening to close your account if you do not log in and “verify” your information. Do not click through links in such emails. Norwood Bank never asks for your personal information via email.
Viruses, spyware, Trojan horses and keystroke logging software can be downloaded from malicious sites without your knowledge. Keep your computer operating system up to date, including security updates, and always use anti-virus and anti-spyware software. Try to avoid using public computers or unsecured Wi-Fi networks to log in to sites where your personal information is stored.
Scammers can pose as representatives of your bank or charities you support in order to obtain your financial information. When in doubt, call the institution back at a known phone number; then continue your transaction. Norwood Bank never calls to ask for your personal information.
Safeguard all incoming and outgoing bills and other documents that contain your account numbers. Pick up mail promptly, and only post outgoing bills in secure U.S. Postal Service mailboxes. Check your bank statement frequently and report unusual and unexplained activity immediately. Consider switching to online bill pay for a more secure payment method.
Shred all unwanted documents that contain your account numbers, Social Security number, etc. Store checkbooks, account statements and other documents containing sensitive information out of sight in your home. Put out trash shortly before pickup time to minimize the opportunity for Dumpster-diving.
If you lose your wallet, driver’s license, ATM card, credit card or other sensitive documents, immediately notify the bank, credit card companies, the Department of Motor Vehicles, etc. Call Norwood Bank at 781-440-4260 to report a lost bank card, or suspicious activity on your account.
Thieves can hack the unprotected smartphone or tablet to steal data. Password-protect your phone or tablet, and when using online or mobile banking, do not allow the device to automatically log into your banking site. Be careful what you download, and watch out for email or text spams seeking your data. Turn off automatic Wi-Fi login to avoid unsecured Wi-Fi networks where nearby thieves can steal data while you are online. Remove all personal data and account numbers from phones and tablets before recycling the devices.
Some thieves play on your good nature to get personal data. Be wary of solicitations via phone, email or social media that pretend to come from people or organizations you know. Do not open unexpected email attachments, even from people you know. Take a moment to contact the sender separately and ask about the attachment.
Prevent business identity theft
High-profile data breaches at major corporations have exposed millions of people’s personal data—and exposed the companies to legal action. You can protect employee, customer and corporate data, and your corporate bank and vendor accounts, by taking a proactive approach to cybersecurity:
- Know what information your company stores, and where.
- Safely purge old records no longer needed for operations. Shred all sensitive documents.
- Ensure that all data in your care is kept secure, and your website, mobile app and servers are provided with up-to-date cybersecurity measures, such as layered system security.
- Be cautious about allowing unfamiliar people into workspaces, especially those that have network access. Do not allow the public into Employees Only secure areas.
- Restrict administrative privileges on your network, and use two-party payment approval to minimize the chance of losses if a breach occurs.
- Create a response plan detailing possible security issues from lost company smartphones to server hacking. Include step-by-step remedial actions and select personnel to carry out those duties.
What to do when identity theft occurs
Fortunately, there are now clearly defined steps to take when you suspect your personal information has been compromised. Visit identitytheft.gov to report an identity theft and receive a step-by-step plan to get your financial life back on track. For example, victims have the option to impose security freezes or fraud alerts on their credit reports after a breach. The Federal Trade Commission provides extensive advice on identity theft on their website.