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Internet Banking Security Tips

Metro Phoenix Bank would like to alert its customers to a type of sophisticated wire payment fraud where scammers use fraudulent information to trick companies into directing financial transactions into accounts scammers control. More information can be found here.

Security breaches involving online customer information or accounts make headlines every day. Metro Phoenix Bank invests significant resources to protect your money and information; however, many of the most important aspects of security are entirely under your control. The following tips are critical for protecting your accounts.

Make sure you are running an effective, up-to-date anti-virus program. You must make sure that it is automatically updating itself so that your protection is current. You should also ensure that your computer and web browser are patched with the latest security updates.

It is recommended that passwords should combine upper and lower-case letters with numbers and symbols, be at least ten characters, and should not be based on a word that can be looked up in a dictionary. Your banking password should be different from any other passwords you use. If you write passwords down, keep them in a secure place.

Never give your password to anyone, including those claiming to be Bank personnel. Bank personnel will not ask you for your password, and we will never call or email you asking you to verify your login information.

You should be familiar with the appearance of the Bank's websites and be alert to any changes. However, criminals can create sites that appear exactly like legitimate sites. They use a variety of means to direct victims to fraudulent websites that resemble the ones they are used to seeing.

Make sure your Internet banking website is the correct one before logging into it. Save a bookmark of the bank website and use the bookmark to access the site rather than typing it in. If you make a mistake typing in a website URL you could be directed to a fraudulent site designed to trick you into entering your login information.

Use a secure Internet router for connection to Internet banking websites. If you use WiFi, your wireless connection should use strong encryption. If your router is more than a few years old, you may need to replace it in order to have the latest encryption technology.

Do not access your Internet banking website from public WiFi networks, such as those at coffee shops or airports. Such networks may be compromised and cannot be assumed safe. Furthermore, it is possible for individuals to display fake WiFi connection spots designed to lure you into connecting through their compromised services.

If you experience odd problems, slowness, messages, or delays when logging into the banking website, it could indicate an attempt to intercept an online banking session in order to steal funds. If you experience such things, you should log out, close the browser immediately, and call the Bank. The Bank does not initiate chat sessions with customers. If anyone claiming to be with the Bank attempts to open a chat session with you, close your browser immediately, turn off your computer and call the Bank. You may occasionally encounter service error messages on the Bank website; these error messages are not an indication of account takeover unless accompanied by the other symptoms mentioned.

If you do experience anything suspicious when attempting to log in, telephone your bank rather than sending an email, in case your PC has been compromised. You should keep a copy of the Bank's phone number written down in order to avoid possibly getting an incorrect phone number later from a fraudulent site.

Avoid posting personal information like your email address, date of birth and phone number on social network websites like Facebook. Only accept friend requests from people you know. Someone posing as a person asking to become friends may actually be an ID thief. Check your privacy settings carefully and make sure only people you trust can view your profile. You should also be aware of posted information that could enable unauthorized individuals to guess your security questions, such as the name of pets or a past school. Do not select security questions that can be answered based on such readily available information.

Regularly check your bank account statements for suspicious transactions. If you spot something unfamiliar, report it to the bank immediately.

Talk to us about better security. The Bank provides multiple options for increasing security. These options include requiring two people to originate funds transfers, restricting activity to certain times of day or locations, and login tokens. Depending on your level of activity, the Bank may require one or more of these options.

For maximum security, the Bank recommends using a dedicated PC used only for online banking. You should not web browse or use email from the dedicated PC, and should keep it turned off when not in use. Of course, a dedicated PC also needs to have anti-virus software installed and updated and it should receive the same security updates recommended for any other PC used for banking.

If you experience odd problems, slowness, messages, or delays when logging into the banking website, you might be experiencing an attempt to intercept an online banking session in order to steal funds. If you experience such things, you should log out, close the browser immediately, and contact the Bank. The Bank does not initiate chat sessions with customers. If anyone claiming to be with the Bank attempts to open a chat session with you, close your browser immediately, turn off your computer and call the Bank. You may sometimes encounter error messages on the Bank website; these error messages are not an indication of account takeover unless accompanied by the other symptoms mentioned.

Don't use mobile phones web browsers to access bank resources. Modern smart phone browsers work identically to the ones used for PCs; therefore, it is possible to use a smart phone for banking. However, mobile security is a new area. It is still not common to run anti-virus software on a phone, and new techniques for compromising phone security are being exploited each day. Only use a secured computer or Metro Phoenix Bank's mobile banking application for managing your bank accounts.

Consumer accounts (accounts established primarily for personal, family, or household purposes) are protected under Regulation E, which covers Electronic Funds Transfers (EFT). Non-consumer accounts are not protected by Regulation E. Computer-initiated online banking transfers are considered Electronic Funds Transfers.

Regulation E gives consumers a way to notify their financial institution that an EFT has been made on their account without their permission. You can notify our bank of any unauthorized use by calling 602-346-1800 or 877-281-4396. Tell us at once if you believe your online banking credentials have been lost or stolen or if you believe that an electronic fund transfer has been made without your permission. Telephoning is the best way of keeping your possible losses down. You could lose all the money in your account (plus your maximum overdraft line of credit).

If you tell us within two (2) business days after you learn of the loss or theft of your card or code, you can lose no more than $50.00 if someone used your card or code without your permission. If you do NOT tell us within two (2) business days after you learn of the loss or theft of your card or code, and we can prove that we could have stopped someone from using your card or code without your permission if you had told us, you could lose as much as $500.00. Also, if your statement shows transfers that you did not make, including those made by card code or other means, tell us at once. If you do not tell us within sixty (60) days after the statement was mailed to you, you may not get back any money lost after the sixty (60) days if we can prove that we could have stopped someone from taking the money if you had told us in time, If a good reason (such as a long trip or a hospital stay) kept you from telling us, we will extend the time periods.

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