Holiday Scam Awareness
Be Aware of Scams
With the holiday quickly approaching, be aware of fraudulent phishing scams. These come in all forms from text messages, emails, phone calls, and social media outlets. In order to safeguard your identity and protect your finances, never provide someone with your personal banking information, no matter how legitimate it may sound. Remember the credit union, or any of our affiliates, will NEVER call, text or email you for your personal information.
Financial Protection, Security & Education
As a commitment to our members, Trona Valley Federal Credit Union wants to ensure the protection of your personal and account information.
Trona Valley, or any of our affiliates, will NEVER call, text or email you for your personal information, as we already have it!
If you receive an email or phone call appearing to be from Trona Valley requesting personal information, such as your Account Number or Social Security Number, do not respond and notify us immediately at 307-875-9800. If you have any doubt, hang up and call the credit union at 307-875-9800.
For more information on how to protect yourself visit: ftc.gov/idtheft
Be Aware of Fraud and Scams
- Unemployment fraud and scams are happening today; it’s an opportunity for criminals to take advantage of you and the system.
- If you are receiving money with the expectation that you need to send money to another person or business, it is likely a scam.
- Please monitor your account activity and report anything suspicious to Trona Valley.
- If you see a deposit for unemployment insurance that you are not expecting, please contact Trona Valley, so the deposit can be returned and the credit union can assist you with precautions necessary to protect your personal information.
U.S. citizens from several states have been victimized by criminal actors impersonating the victims and using the victims’ stolen identities to submit fraudulent unemployment insurance claims online. The criminals obtain the stolen identity using a variety of techniques, including the online purchase of stolen PII, previous data breaches, computer intrusions, cold-calling victims while using impersonation scams, email phishing schemes, physical theft of data from individuals or third parties, and from public websites and social media accounts, among other methods. Criminal actors will use third parties or persuade individuals who are victims of other scams or frauds to transfer fraudulent funds to accounts controlled by criminals.
Many victims of identity theft related to unemployment insurance claims do not know they have been targeted until they try to file a claim for unemployment insurance benefits, receive a notification from the state unemployment insurance agency, receive an IRS Form 1099-G showing the benefits collected from unemployment insurance, or get notified by their employer that a claim has been filed while the victim is still employed.
Be on the lookout for the following suspicious activities:
- Receiving communications regarding unemployment insurance forms when you have not applied for unemployment benefits
- Unauthorized transactions on your bank or credit card statements related to unemployment benefits
- Any fees involved in filing or qualifying for unemployment insurance
- Unsolicited inquires related to unemployment benefits
- Fictitious websites and social media pages mimicking those of government agencies
Tips on how to protect yourself:
- Be wary of telephone calls and text messages, letters, websites, or emails that require you to provide your personal information or other sensitive information, especially birth dates and Social Security numbers. Be cautious with attachments and embedded links within email, especially from an unknown email sender.
- Make yourself aware of methods fraudsters are using to obtain PII and how to combat them by following security tips issued by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, including:
- Monitor your accounts on a regular basis and request your credit report at least once a year to look for any fraudulent activity. If you believe you are a victim, review your credit report more frequently.
- Immediately report unauthorized transactions to your financial institution or credit card provider.
- If you suspect you are a victim, immediately contact the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit records. Additionally, notify the Internal Revenue Service by filing an Identity Theft Affidavit (IRS Form 14039) through irs.gov or identitytheft.gov.
If you believe you have been a victim of identity theft related to fraudulent unemployment insurance claims, report the fraud to law enforcement, state unemployment insurance agencies, the IRS, credit bureaus, and your employer’s human resources department.
Security Training, Education, and Awareness
Trona Valley has partnered with Trace Security to provide our members with additional resources for protecting their personal and financial information. The Training, Education, and Awareness Module contains courses related to Online Security, E-Mail and Phone Scams, and Mobile Device Security, just to name a few. Each course provides information and resources available, and a short quiz to test your knowledge.
ID Theft & Fraud
Trona Valley is here to help our members protect their personal information by providing information on the most recent ID Theft and Fraud issues and security breeches locally and nationally, as well as tips to keeping you safe online and out there in the world. Read and click on the following section about the NCUA Fraud Prevention Center. But at any time you need to report any suspected fraud or to notify us before traveling to avoid blocked transactions, please click here to contact us. We also have this great resource and workbook about What to do if your ID is stolen.
In the aftermath of any incident where fraud has taken place, scammers will often prey on individuals even further. Verify phone calls and watch out for phishing emails.
Also, review your credit score annually for free and with no impact to your credit score by visiting https://www.annualcreditreport.com/
NCUA Fraud Prevention Center
The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) now provides a wonderful resource for credit union members covering a variety of frauds and scams, identity theft and online security information and protection measures. Click here to surf around this informative and very helpful personal and financial protection tool.
Always remember, Trona Valley, or any of our affiliates, will NEVER call, text or email you for your personal information. If for any reason we need to speak with you, we will clearly identify ourselves for your security and well-being, and will NEVER ask for your account information.