Midstates Bank will never call and ask for account information over the phone. Under no circumstances should you give out your social security number, account numbers or PIN's to anyone via e-mail or over the phone. Please advise our staff if you receive any phone calls, or emails requesting such information.
Economic Stimulus Refund IRS Phishing Advisory
Simply Put: A new phishing scam is currently making its way around the internet. Phishers are sending out email which appears to come from the IRS with information on your 2008 Economic Stimulus Refund. The email requests that you fill out an online form with your personal information so the check can be directly deposited in your bank account. The link to the form is included in the email. This email is not from the IRS, and is designed to steal a person’s identity.
Attack Details: Hoax-slayer.com has examples of both the email and the form in its advisory (linked below). Some emails also include malicious code embedded in the email. All emails matching this description should be deleted when received. Do not read the email or click on any embedded links.
Countermeasures: Users should be notified that these emails are circulating the internet. Do not open or respond to any emails asking for personal information. If an email appears to come from a known source, browse to the company’s website to double-check the authenticity of the information. Type in the company’s address manually, do not rely on embedded links.
7 Golden Rules for Fighting Identity Theft
Protecting Yourself from Cashier Check Fraud - What Every Bank Customer Should Know
Consumers who sell items through online auctions or classified ads should be on the lookout for scam artists who pay with counterfeit cashier's checks. The scam takes many forms, but generally involves an offer for an item, apartment or service for sale from a person the victim doesn't know (often from another country). The scam artist sends a high-quality, but counterfeit, cashier's check as payment, which the victim presents to their bank. Due to the sophistication of these forgeries, they are difficult to discover before the bank makes the funds available to the victim. In another common scenario, the scam artist sends a bogus check for an amount greater than the purchase price. The scam artist offers what seems like a reasonable explanation for the overpayment and asks the victim to wire back the difference. Again, this all takes place before the forgery can be detected.
Protect Yourself: Understand that although the bank may allow you to withdraw money from a cashier's check, that doesn't necessarily mean the check has cleared.
Remember: You are responsible for the funds until your bank has received the proceeds from the institution where the check originated
Be cautious of transactions with strangers who pay with cashier's checks
Avoid any situation where someone pays more than the purchase price of an item and demands that the extra money be returned. Ask for a new check in the correct amount
Be suspect of any cashier's check that just shows up in the mail, especially if it has a "congratulations" letter attached
Hold any funds provided by cashier's check from someone you don't know for at least 30 to 45 days to ensure that funds are valid.
Checking your Credit
Experts say to guard against identity theft by checking your credit once a year. You can obtain a free credit report once a year from each of the credit reporting agencies - Experian, Equifax and Trans Union online at: www.annualcreditreport.com or Toll Free at: 1-877-322-8228
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