Credit Union Youth Month!
April is Credit Union Youth Month! This is the perfect time to bring your children to Hudson Heritage to make sure they’re set for a strong financial future. We offer savings and checking accounts that you can open jointly with your child that are perfect for saving for the future. We also offer online banking, and a free mobile app to access accounts on the go! For qualified young adults trying to build credit, we also offer secured and regular Visa® credit cards. Stop by your local branch or call 845.561.5607 for more details on our products to fit your child’s needs.
NCUA Warns of Fake Check Scams
Consumers Should Be Vigilant and Avoid Depositing Checks from Unknown Parties
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (April 10, 2017) – Consumers should be on the lookout for fake check scams, the National Credit Union Administration warned today after receiving numerous inquiries from consumers.
There are many versions of a fake check scam. However, the result is the same. Scammers lure consumers into depositing a cashier’s check, money order, or other checking instrument from someone that they don’t know and wiring or sending money to the scammers. A check may take considerably longer to clear the financial institution that issued it before the funds can be collected. It could take days or even weeks to discover that the deposited check was fraudulent.
When the check is discovered to be fraudulent, the damage may already have been done. Once a victim wires or sends funds from such a check, he or she may be responsible for reimbursing the financial institution for that amount. Typically, the financial institution will not cover the financial loss and expects the victim to pay the difference.
The Federal Trade Commission also recently issued a fake check scam alert. These checks can be hard to recognize. They may be printed with the names, addresses, and logos of legitimate financial institutions. Consumers are reminded to be on the alert and to not be pressured into wiring funds or sending money after depositing a check.
If you think you or someone you know was the victim of a fake check scam, consider taking the following steps:
- Contact your local law enforcement agency to report the scam.
- Contact your state’s attorney general. Contact information for each state’s attorney general can be found on the National Association of Attorneys General website.
- File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. Your complaint will be filed into a secure online database, which is used by many local, state, federal, and international law enforcement agencies. Complaints from consumers help detect patterns of fraud and abuse.
- If you or the victim is an older adult or a person with a disability, contact your local adult protective services agency. You can find local support resources using the online Eldercare Locator or by calling 1-800-677-1116.
NCUA operates an online Fraud Prevention Center that offers information about avoiding frauds and scams on its MyCreditUnion.gov website. NCUA also released a two-part video series for consumers on fraud prevention techniques.
Under the Federal Credit Union Act, promoting financial literacy is a core credit union mission. While credit unions serve the needs of their members and promote financial literacy within the communities they serve, NCUA works to reinforce credit union efforts, raise consumer awareness and increase access to credit union services. NCUA also participates in national financial literacy initiatives, including the Financial Literacy and Education Commission, an interagency group created by Congress to improve the nation’s financial literacy and education. Access NCUA’s Financial Literacy Resource center at NCUA.gov for more information.
Information about the most recent Yahoo! email hack
A newly revealed Yahoo data breach, which occurred in 2013, involved personal information associated with more than one billion user accounts, twice those affected in a different incursion disclosed in September.
The stolen user-account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, birthdates, hashed passwords, and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. The investigation, according to Yahoo, so far indicates the stolen information did not include passwords in clear text, payment card data, or financial account information.
The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based search company, which is being acquired by Verizon for about $4.8 billion, said an unauthorized third party stole the data and that it was working closely with law enforcement.
Yahoo said it believed the latest incident was likely distinct from the breach disclosed in September, when it revealed personal information associated with at least 500 million user accounts, including names, passwords, birthdates, and email addresses, was stolen in 2014. In a statement in September, Yahoo said the compromised information was taken by an unnamed state-sponsored actor.
The Yahoo data breaches, and other incidents involving the release of personally identifiable information, has broader implications for financial institutions and other businesses.
“Yahoo should know that it is an invaluable target for cybercrime syndicates and nation-states and invest the resources to protect its data accordingly,” Kenneth Geers, senior research scientist at Clifton, N.J.-based cybersecurity firm Comodo Enterprise, said. “We shouldn’t forget that an insider, a rival corporation, or even a nation-state might operate purely out of selfish financial considerations,” Geers added.
Scott Fulton, technical fellow at Phoenix-based security company BeyondTrust, also commented. “Now more than ever companies need to protect themselves when other companies are compromised. We all know users reuse passwords and we can almost guarantee that the answers to user’s internal secret questions are the same as their personal secret questions.”
It is recommended that every single Yahoo! user update their passwords IMMEDIATELY. This is to provide a safeguard to help prevent hackers from accessing your information without you knowing.
Watch out for Phishing Scams!
The New York State Police have warned of a recent wave of Phishing Scams. According to the Associated Press, scammers are calling New York State residents with the false claim that they are the NYS Police, and that the victim’s identity has been stolen. The caller then says that in order to further investigate the matter, they need certain pieces of personal information from the victim. These calls are not from the State Police. If you receive one of these calls, hang up IMMEDIATELY and call your local State Police office to report it. Also, remember to never give out personal info over the phone, especially if you do not know the caller personally, and if you did not initiate the call. For more tips on how to avoid being the victim of telephone phishing scams, visit hhfcu.org/beware-holiday-scammers/
NCUA Warns of Text Phishing Scam
Recently, the NCUA has received consumer calls about a suspicious text message claiming to come from the agency. The message reads: “National Credit Union Administration Alert for (recipient’s phone number). Contact 844-234-5445.”
“This is not a communication from NCUA. The agency does not seek personal information through the internet or on the telephone,” a press release from the agency stated.
The NCUA urged consumers to contact NCUA’s Consumer Assistance Center at 1-800-755-1030 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Eastern Time for those receiving one of these messages. NCUA also recommended members contact their credit union, local law enforcement or the Internet Crime Complaint Center, a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the National White Collar Crime Center.
NCUA operates an online Fraud Prevention Center that offers information about avoiding frauds and scams on its MyCreditUnion.gov website.
Increased Debit Card Fraud
Financial institutions have seen an increase of debit card fraud within the past few weeks. Because of this, HHFCU is recommending that for the time being, our members to use their PIN for all debit card transactions. When you use your debit card without your PIN number, you are missing a key layer of security that can help protect you from fraudulent purchases on your debit card.
As always, please continue to review your account(s) and as a best practice we recommend reviewing your account(s) on a daily basis. Any fraud on your account(s) should be reported immediately.
If you have any questions, or would like to report fraud on your account, please contact our Member Service Center at (845) 561-5607.
5 Steps to Creating Financial Serenity
Are you tired of avoiding your checkbook? Is your debit card ready to shred itself? Maybe it’s time to create a budget. A budget is a useful tool to help you keep track of, as well as analyze your finances. You may find unexpected opportunities to save money or payoff your loans faster. Grab paper, a pen, and a cup of joe. Let’s get started.
Types of Financial Scams
Please be aware of the following types of financial scams.
This is not a complete list of scams as new scams appear everyday.
How to Prevent Elder Abuse
Seniors and their families lose billions of dollars each year to heartless fraudsters. Learn about ways to protect yourself and your loved ones. Read the full Consumer Reports Article here.
Can No Limit Credit Cards Limit Your Credit Score?
If you are familiar with the way credit scoring works, you probably know that avoiding being “maxed out” on your credit cards and other revolving accounts generally impacts your score in a positive way. You might also be aware that the FICO score – the most popular model – dedicates 30% of its score calculation to how much of your available credit you are using.