Security Tips

Fraud & Safety Tips

  • Never write down your passwords or social security number. Also, don’t carry your social security card on you unless absolutely necessary.
  • Don’t access your financial accounts online at public kiosk locations like those found in hotels and airports.
  • Never give personal or financial data over the phone unless you initiated the phone call.
  • Don't email personal or financial data. Email is not a secure method of transmitting sensitive information.
  • Shred receipts after receiving cash from the ATM. Never throw them away at the ATM location.
  • Using GTE Online Banking and Bill Pay eliminates having your paper checks and statements in the mail.
  • Carry minimal cards and report any lost or stolen ones immediately. Keep a list of all your credit card issuer’s contact numbers in a safe location.   
  • Shred financial information including pre-approved credit applications, bills, and credit/debit card receipts before throwing them away to keep safe from dumpster diving.
  • Order a free copy of your credit report periodically from the three major credit bureaus to check for fraudulent activity or discrepancies.
  • Try to keep an eye on your credit/debit card and driver's license whenever you hand them to restaurant servers or store clerks.   
  • Review your account statements as soon as you receive them or log in to your accounts regularly to watch for unauthorized charges.
  • Beware of mail or telephone offers specifically looking for your credit/debit card number. 

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Internet Safety & Security Tips

  • Keep all software current with recommended automatic updates.
  • Use  and regularly update your firewall, antivirus, anti-spam, and antispyware software.
  • Password-protect your wireless connection at home.
  • Look for signs that a web page is safe before you enter sensitive, personal information:
  1. A web address with HTTPS – the ‘S’ means secure
  2. A padlock icon beside the web address
  • When shopping online, do not check the "remember my password" box. It is safer not to keep this information on your computer.
  • Never give sensitive info in response to an email or instant message request.
  • Think twice before you open attachments or links in emails, even if you know the sender, and be especially careful clicking links or buttons in pop-up windows.
  • Create strong passwords and keep them secret. Make them at least 8 characters and include lower and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Don’t use the same password for all sites.
  • Beware of alarmist messages, misspellings, and grammatical errors, deals that sound too good to be true, and request for your personal info.
  • Make use of account and privacy settings on social networks like Facebook to control who can see your profile and learn how to block unwanted access.

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