Current Fraud Schemes -Please be advised of two emerging fraud trends that target businesses, employers, and taxpayers alike.
The first fraud scheme is a variation of the Business Email Compromise (BEC) scam. This social enginerring scam focuses specifically on public-sector entities such as government agencies, public universities, and colleges. Fraudsters contact the business entity claiming to be a representative from a valid contractor, requesting an update to the payment information for that contractor. The update is most commonly a change in routing and account information for ACH or Wire payments, but it could also be a request to change the method of payment from check to ACH or Wire. We encourage you to authenticate any request for a change in payment information received via email with a telephone call to the contractor or vendor to verify the legitimacy of the request.
The second fraud trend is a W-2 email phishing scam in which cybercriminals send emails to Human Resouce and payroll administrators requesting a list of all employees and their W-2 forms. This scam can result in the filing of fraudulent tax returns as well as identity theft. This year alone, over 29,000 taxpayers have alread been affected by the W-2 email phishing scam according to numbers by Forbes.
For more information on current fraud threats and Business Email Compromise, please visit the following websites:
NACHA: Current Fraud Threats Resource Center
FS-ISAC: Fraud Alert - Business E-mail Compromise Continues to Swindle and Defraud U.S. Businesses - June 19, 2015
FBI: Business E-Mail Compromise; An Emerging Global Threat - August 28, 2015
EPCOR: IRS Warns of Revamped W-2 Email Scam
Business Email Compromise Scam - Business Email Compromise (BEC) is defined as a sophisticated scam targeting businesses working with foreign suppliers and/or businesses that regulary perform wire transfer payments. The scam is carried out by compromising legitimate business e-mail accounts through social engineering or computer intrusion techniques to conduct unauthorized transfers of funds.
Best practices for added protection include:
- Create intrusion detection system rules that flag e-mails with extensions that are similar to company e-mail.
- Register all company domains that are slightly different than the actual company domain.
- Verify changes in vendor payment location by adding additional two-factor authentication such as having a secondary sign-off by company personnel.
- Confirm requests for transfers of funds. When using phone verification as part of the two-factor authentication, use previously known numbers, not the numbers provided in the e-mail request.
- Carefully scrutinize all e-mail requests for transfer of funds to determine if the requests are out of the ordinary.
Click here to learn more about this scam and find out how to protect yourself.
Skimmer Attacks are on the Rise - There has been a recent increase of ATM skimmer attacks. ATM skimmers are devices placed on ATMs and Point-of-Sale Terminals to steal account information. Be aware of anything on the front of the ATM or the Point-of-Sale Terminal that looks crooked, loose, or damaged; it could be a sign that a skimming device has been attached. Cover the keypad with your hand to block another person or camera from viewing you PIN entry. Provide us with your updated phone numbers, so you can be contacted if suspicious activity is detected.
Samsung SwiftKey Vulnerability - You may be seeing reports of a new exploit targeting a vulnerability in the SwiftKey keyboard pre-installed on multiple models of the Samsung Galaxy including the S5 and S6. The SwiftKey keyboard looks for updates over unencrypted lines, in unencrypted text. The vulnerability can be used by attackers to gain system privileges and obtain private information such as bank login credentials.
If you use a Samsung Galaxy phone, as a security best practice, we recommend that your device is configured to automatically receive security updates from Samsung. If you have questions about these updates, please contact your carrier. We also recommend that you minimize the use of unsecure wireless networks when accessing private information, such as mobile banking, until the security update for this vulnerability is made available.
Please click here to be redirected to a statement Samsung has issued regarding this vulnerability.
Beware of Juice Jacking! - Please beware of Juice Jacking, a popular tactic that fraudsters are using to compromise the security of your mobile device. In this particular scheme, criminals utilize free power charging stations, commonly located in airports, bus terminals, and coffee bars, to gain access of passwords, photos, and other personal information stored on your device.
Fraudsters tamper with these unsecured charging stations by installing a small computer that syncs with your device once it’s connected via the supplied USB cord. After your device is sync’d to the criminal’s computer, they can steal your private information stored on your device as well as remotely access your phone again any time in the future. In addition to stealing the information stored on your device, they can also infect your Smartphone or tablet with malicious code and/or malware.
Please use caution and avoid becoming a victim of this or any type of fraud! The safest route for charging your device away from home is to use your own power cord and plug it into a regular electrical outlet. Battery powered mobile charging devices are also safe alternatives. If you must use a random charging kiosk, the safest option is to completely power off your device before plugging it in.
Recent "Tech Support" Scam - Please be aware of a recent fraud trend that is circulating in our area. Customers have reported receiving an unsolicited phone call from a person claiming to be a representative of a reputable computer software or Anti-virus company. This caller will claim the customer’s computer is infected with malware and ask to be granted Remote Access to log into their PC and resolve the issue. Once this access is granted, the perpetrator can easily take control of their PC and infiltrate their Online Banking system, access saved passwords, download malicious software, and more. Don’t become a victim! Click here to learn more about this scam and find out how to protect yourself.
Recent Text Message Scam - Please be aware of a recent text message scam circulating in the area. Victims have reported that they are receiving text messages claiming to be from their Financial Institution notifying them that their debit card is blocked. They will likely ask you to reply to the message or call and verify your debit card number. These are fraudulent messages. Central Bank and Trust Co. will not text you and ask you to verify your card number.
We currently have a service which monitors card activity for red flags. You may receive a call to verify large or unusual transactions. If we are unable to verify these transactions, your card will be blocked until we can verify the activity. We will not call or text to ask you to verify your card information. If a lost or stolen card is reported to a branch location over the phone, we may ask you to come into a branch in order to dispute charges and/or request a new card.
If you have any questions regarding this notice or other scams, please contact us.