Avoid Identity Theft

Online Banking Fraud Prevention - Best Practices


User ID and Password Guidelines

  • Create a "strong" password with at least 8 characters that includes a combination of mixed case letters, numbers, and special characters.
  • Change your password frequently (preferably every 90 days or less).
  • Never share username and password information with anyone.
  • Avoid using an automatic login feature that saves usernames and passwords.

General Guidelines

  • Do not use public or other unsecured computers for logging into online banking.
  • Check your last login date/time every time you log in.
  • Review account balances and detail transactions regularly (preferably daily) to confirm payment and other transaction data and immediately report any suspicious transactions to Summit State Bank.
  • View transfer history available through viewing account activity information.
  • Whenever possible, use Bill Pay instead of checks to limit account number dissemination exposure and to obtain better electronic record keeping.
  • Take advantage of and regularly view system alerts; examples include:
    • Session Activity alerts (i.e.- successful or failed login attempts)
    • Service alerts (i.e. – address, phone number, email, password changes)
    • Balance alerts
    • Transfer alerts
    • Stop Payment alerts
    • Password change alerts
    • ACH Alerts (for cash management users)
    • Wire Alerts (for cash management users)
    • Positive Pay Alerts (for cash management users)
  • Do not use account numbers, your social security number, or other account or personal information when creating account nicknames or other titles.
  • Review historical reporting features of your online banking application on a regular basis to confirm payment and other transaction data.
  • Never leave a computer unattended while using online banking.
  • Never conduct banking transactions while multiple browsers are open on your computer.
  • An FBI recommended best practice is to suggest that company users dedicate a PC solely for financial transactions (e.g., no web browsing, emails, or social media).

Tips to Protect Online Payments and Account Data

  • When you have completed a transaction, ensure that you log off and close the browser.
  • Use separate accounts for electronic and paper transactions to simplify monitoring and tracking any discrepancies.
  • Reconcile by carefully monitoring account activity and reviewing all transactions initiated by your company on a daily basis.

Tips to Avoid Phishing, Spyware and Malware

  • Do not open e-mail from unknown sources. Be suspicious of e-mails purporting to be from a financial institution, government department, or other agency requesting account information, account verification, or banking access credentials such as usernames, passwords, PIN codes, and similar information. Opening file attachments or clicking on web links in suspicious e-mails could expose your system to malicious code that could hijack your computer.
  • Never respond to a suspicious e-mail or click on any hyperlink embedded in a suspicious e-mail. Call the purported source if you are unsure who sent an e-mail.
  • If an e-mail claiming to be from Summit State Bank seems suspicious, contact us immediately.
  • Install anti-virus and spyware detection software on all computer systems. Free software may not provide protection against the latest threats compared with an industry standard product.
  • Update all of your computers regularly with the latest versions and patches of both anti-virus and anti-spyware software.
  • Ensure computers are patched regularly, particularly operating system and key application with security patches.
  • Install a dedicated, actively managed firewall, especially if using a broadband or dedicated connection to the Internet, such as DSL or cable. A firewall limits the potential for unauthorized access to your network and computers.
  • Check your settings and select, at least, a medium level of security for your browsers.
  • Clear the browser cache before starting an online banking session in order to eliminate copies of Web pages that have been stored on the hard drive. How the cache is cleared depends on the browser and version you are using. This function is generally found in the browser's preferences menu.

Tips for Wireless Network Management

Wireless networks can provide an unintended open door to your business network. Unless a valid business reason exists for wireless network use, it is recommended that all wireless networks be disabled. If a wireless network is to be used for legitimate business purposes, it is recommended that wireless networks be secured as follows:

  • Change the wireless network hardware (router /access point) administrative password from the factory default to a complex password. Save the password in a secure location as it will be needed to make future changes to the device.
  • Disable remote administration of the wireless network hardware (router / access point).
  • If possible, disable broadcasting the network SSID.
  • Secure your wireless network by enabling WPA2 encryption of the wireless network.
  • If only known computers will access the wireless network, consider enabling MAC filtering on the network hardware. Every computer network card is assigned a unique MAC address. MAC filtering will only allow computers with permitted MAC addresses access to the wireless network.

Below are specific guidelines for customers using Online Banking cash management functionalities

Administrative Users

  • Contact Summit State Bank when employees leave your company, so we can delete online user IDs, as part of the exit procedure.
  • Assign dual system administrators for online cash management services.
  • Use multiple approvals for monetary transactions and require separate entry and approval users.
  • Establish transaction dollar limits for employees who initiate and approve online payments such as ACH batches, wire transfers, and account transfers.

Account Transfer

  • Use limits provided for monetary transactions at multiple levels: per transaction, daily, weekly, or monthly limits.

ACH (Automated Clearing House Batches)

  • Use pre-notification transactions to verify that account numbers within your ACH payments are correct.
  • Use limits for monetary transactions at multiple levels: per transaction, daily, weekly, or monthly limits.
  • Review transaction reporting regularly to confirm transaction activity.
  • Utilize available alerts for ACH activity.

Wire Transfer

  • Use limits provided for monetary transactions at multiple levels: per transaction, daily, weekly, or monthly limits.
  • Review historical and audit reports regularly to confirm transaction activity.
  • Utilize available alerts for wire transfer activity.



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