Welcome to First Federal's Security Page where you can find information about protecting your privacy, preventing fraud and learn about recent scams.
First Federal’s Commitment to You, Our Customer:
- First Federal will notify customers of fraud or company breaches.
- Please be assured that our Customers are protected from any loss related to debit card fraud by Regulation E. This Regulation provides 100% protection and zero liability to customers for any unauthorized transactions in events such as these.
- We continue to monitor accounts for unusual activity and will alert you of any suspicious activity.
- There has been some discussion in the media regarding the safety of using your card as “credit” versus “debit”. However, when card data is breached, there is no difference.
- We will periodically update this site as additional information becomes available. Your safety and peace of mind is important to us.
- We encourage you to review the recommendations below. We have also provided a link to our security tips for good advice on how to keep your information safe and secure.
FIRST FEDERAL recommends the following to help keep your information safe:
- Watch your account closely for any suspicious activity. If you see any transactions that are fraudulent, please call us at 360/417-3204. If you have online banking, you have the ability to check your account when you are able to and as often as you would like.
- You can set up balance alerts to receive notification of any unexpected changes in your account.
- If you are one of our customers affected by the Target breach, we encourage you to enroll in the free year of credit monitoring and identity theft protection that Target is offering.
- We know that customer education is the first line of defense against these scams and have compiled the following tips and resources to help in this education process. Below are some of the valuable resources available to you via our First Federal website.
Important Tip – “Phishing” Education:
There has been a worldwide increase in phishing scams. Phishing refers to criminal activity that attempts to fraudulently obtain sensitive information, such as your social security number, driver’s license, credit card and/or bank account information. We know that customer education is the first line of defense against these scams and have compiled the following tips and resources to help in this education process.
- Please do NOT respond to any email that directs you to update your personal information by dialing a telephone number. Only use the customer service number that is listed on the back of your credit/debit card.
- Phishing scam artists try to replicate the look and feel of the company they are scamming. Be sure to check the website address and the “look and feel” of the information being sent. Does the email ask you to do something that seems unusual or ask you to provide personal information? When in doubt, please contact the sender to confirm. Our Contact Center is available to take your phone call (360) 417-3204 Monday-Thursday 8:00 am to 5:30 pm, Friday 8:00 am to 6:00 pm, and Saturday 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.
- Below are additional resources available to you via our First Federal website.
How can you tell if you are a victim?
Monitor the balances of your financial accounts. Look for unexplained charges or withdrawals. Pay attention to your mail; if you fail to receive bills or other mail your address may have been changed. You may be denied credit for no apparent reason, or you are receiving calls from debt collectors or companies about merchandise or services you didn't buy.
The key to protecting your identity and minimizing your exposure to potential damage is to exercise caution!
- Make sure all of your credit card, bank, and phone accounts have strong passwords. Do not use easily available information like your mother's maiden name, your birth date, the last four digits of your social security number or a series of consecutive numbers. When asked for your mother's maiden name, use a password instead.
- Secure your personal information in your home, especially if you have roommates, employee outside help, or are having service work done in your home.
- Don't give out personal information on the phone, through the mail, or over the Internet unless you've initiated the contact and you are sure you know who you are dealing with. Identity thieves can be skilled liars and may even pose as representatives of banks, service providers, or government agencies to get you to reveal identifying information. You may even receive an e-mail message that looks legitimate, but is really part of a "Phishing" scam.
- Guard your mail from theft. Deposit outgoing mail in post office collection boxes or at your local post office and not unsecured mail boxes. If you are planning to be away from home, stop by your local post office and place a hold on your mail. Or call the US Postal Service at 1-800-275-8777 to ask for a vacation hold.
- Don't leave your trash out in the open. To thwart a thief who may pick through your trash or recycling bins, tear or shred your charge receipts, copies of credit applications or offers, insurance forms, medical statements, checks and bank statements, and expired charge cards.
- Limit the identification information and the number of credit and debit cards that you carry to what you will actually need. Keep your purse or wallet in a safe place!
- Your computer may be a gold mine of personal information. Be sure to update your virus protection software regularly. Look for security repairs and patches you can download from your operating system's Web site. Don't download files from strangers or click on hyperlinks from people you don't know. Opening a file could expose your system to a virus or program that could hijack your modem. Use a firewall, especially if you have a high-speed or "always on" connection to the internet.
- Be sure you are dealing with a legitimate Web site when providing credit card information online. Look for a logo of a padlock or other indication that card numbers are protected during Internet transmissions. In addition, only provide your credit card information when you originate a transaction, not in response to an unsolicited call or e-mail, which may be fraudulent.
- Check your credit report at least annually. Under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACT Act) consumers have access to one free credit report each year. You can request a copy through www.annualcreditreport.com, the only service authorized by Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion - the three major credit bureaus. Additionally, you may request a copy by phone or e-mail.
|Annual Credit Report Request Service
PO Box 105281
Atlanta, GA 30348-5281
|Web Sites with More Information|
|Federal Trade Commission||www.ftc.gov/infosecurity|
|FDIC Consumer News|
How do thieves get your information?
They use a variety of methods such as:
- Stealing wallets and purses containing identification and credit and bank cards.
- Stealing mail, including bank and credit card statements, pre-approved credit offers, new checks, or tax information.
- Rummaging through your trash, or the trash of businesses or dumps in a practice known as "dumpster diving."
- Stealing credit and debit card numbers as your card is processed by using a special information storage device in a practice known as "skimming."
- Completing a "change of address form" to divert your mail to another location.
Once they have your personal information they may:
- Go on a spending spree using your credit and debit card numbers to buy "big-ticket" items like computers that can easily be resold.
- Open a new credit card account, using your name, date of birth, and Social Security Number. When they don't pay the bills, the delinquent account is reported on your credit report.
- Take out auto loans in your name.
- Establish phone or wireless service in your name.
- Create counterfeit checks or debit cards, and drain your bank account.
- Give your name to the police during an arrest. If they are released and don't show up for their court date, an arrest warrant could be issued in your name.
Who do you call if you suspect you are a victim?
Call the fraud department at any one of the three major credit bureaus. Ask for a fraud alert to be placed in your file at all three companies. The alert tells lenders and other users of credit reports to be careful before opening or changing accounts in your name. The toll free numbers for the fraud departments are:
- Equifax 800-525-6285
- Experian 888-397-3742
- TransUnion 800-680-7289
Call your bank, credit card company or any other financial institution that may need to know. Ask to speak with someone in the security or fraud department and follow up with a letter if necessary, close old accounts and open new ones, and select new passwords and "PINs".
Call your local police or the police where the identity theft occurred. Fill out a police report that will detail what happened and get a copy for future reference.
Call the Federal Trade Commission. Call toll-free 877-IDTHEFT (877-438-4338). Also, an "ID Theft Affidavit" available on the FTC Web site can be used to help you prove you are an innocent victim and help you keep debts you did not incur from appearing on your credit report.
Recent Fraud and/or Scams
Revised June 2, 2015
“Card Cracking” Scams are on the rise. To avoid becoming a victim, do not respond to online solicitations for easy money, never share account numbers or PINs, and never file a false fraud claim with a bank. Report suspicious social media posts connected to scams to www.ic3.gov