At Cornerstone, we love technology — it allows us to provide a host of convenient services to our members, from ATMs to online bill pay to our mobile app.
However, to avoid identity theft and fraud, it’s necessary to use caution. Here are some tips to keep your identity and your money safe.
Be aware of these COVID-19 related scams.
Scammers use times of uncertainty to increase their illegal activities. We compiled tips to help you spot and avoid new attempts of common phishing and malware scams.
- APP SCAMS - Scammers create fake apps that claim to "track" the spread of the virus or provide COVID-19 updates, but it's really just malware that infects your phone and gives the scammer access to your information. Rely on legitimate news apps or the CDC's app for COVID-19 news. Don't click on any app advertisements for third party apps.
- BANKING SCAMS- Your financial institution will never call, email or text you asking for your account information or debit/credit card numbers. Don't give any personal or financial info to callers claiming to be from a financial institution. Hang up and call the financial institution
directly from the number on their website. Also, if the caller is pressuring you for a fast payment and/or payment via gift card, it's always a scam.
- CHARITY SCAMS- If you're looking to help, donate to a legitimate charitable organization, not to individuals. You can donate directly to local hospitals through their websites to help buy masks and other items to fight COVID-19, or you can donate to local food banks/rescue missions to help those who have lost their incomes or kids in need of daily meals while school is out.
- FINANCIAL SCAMS- Beware of bogus checks sent through the mail or calls from “Aide Agencies” where the
provider claims to need your bank information to deposit assistance checks. Another financial scam is offering you "secret" stock tips on companies allegedly doing COVID-19
research or testing, promising the investor huge returns to make up for the recent stock Information from Cornerstone on the COVID19 situation To view this email as a web page, go here market dips. Whatever they claim, HANG UP!
- TREATMENT SCAMS- Look out for scammers selling fake cures, advice or vaccines claiming to cure or prevent
COVID-19. They may send a text or email that looks like it's from the CDC or World Health Organization. These organizations will never ask for money in exchange for
medication or information. Don't open the emails/texts, and just hit DELETE.
Never give out your Personal Information
Regardless of what information is being asked of you, you should:
- Question the source. Do you personally know the person or institution calling? Are they asking for information they should already have on file?
- Never give out personal information when contacted by phone, text or email. Personal information includes:
- Your account number
- Your online banking or mobile banking login credentials
- Credit card number
- Passwords or PINs
- Social Security number
- Mother’s maiden name
- Never sign into online banking and grant access to your computer by a remote source. This includes calls from “computer update” representatives or someone trying to “deposit money into your account.”
Cornerstone will never contact you and ask you for account or personal information via email, phone, or text.
We may send you occasional emails promoting Cornerstone products or services or alerting you to changes to your accounts, but these emails will provide a Cornerstone contact person or number to call should you have any questions.
If you contact us directly, we may ask you to verify some information to be sure we’re speaking to the correct person. Some examples of information we may request:
- A combination of digits of your social security number (but never your entire number!)
- Your mother’s maiden name
- Email address or phone number
We will also ask questions regarding your relationship with CCF to further confirm your identity and prevent fraud. These will be facts about your account that only you will know and pieces of information very difficult to obtain from someone other than yourself.
If you ever receive a call or email from a bank, credit union, or other financial institution or organization asking for personal information, be cautious. When in doubt, ask for a call-back number so you can contact us or your primary financial institution first. We can help you determine the validity of the call or email.
Change your password regularly
To avoid fraud and identity theft, we recommend changing your Online Banking and Mobile Banking passwords at least once every 90 days.
The password you choose for Online Banking will also give you access to mobile banking, so remember when you change your password this will apply to both.
To change your password in Online Banking:
- Log in to Online Banking with your current username and password
- On the right-hand side of your screen, click on your name and then select "Settings"
- On the left-hand side of your screen, click "Security"
- Click "Edit" next to Password
- Enter your current password, then enter a new password twice
- Hit "Save"
Guard your card
Protect yourself from ATM fraud:
- When using an ATM, don't let anyone distract you or get too close to you.
- Only use ATMs in safe, well-lit areas.
- If someone moves close to you while using the ATM, do not enter your PIN. Hit cancel and walk away.
- Check your card before leaving the ATM to make sure it’s yours.
- If you need help with the ATM, ask a staff member — not a stranger. If you feel uncomfortable at an ATM, cancel your transaction.
- Never give anyone your PIN, including bank or credit union employees.
- Never let your card (ATM, debit, or credit) out of your sight.
- Do not leave your card lying around.
- If you lose your card, report it immediately.
Use caution when banking online
- Set up eAlerts on CCF's Online Banking, and we’ll notify you when certain types of transactions occur in your account. To set up alerts:
- Log into Online Banking.
- Click “eAlerts.”
- Read and accept the terms and conditions.
- Follow the on-screen prompts until finished!
- Use CCF's Mobile Banking app on secured wireless (don't use a cafe or hotel wireless when banking via app or online).
- Vary your login IDs and passwords and use complex passwords that do not relate to your life (no names of pets, kids, spouse).
- Change login IDs frequently (every month or quarter).
- Only download banking apps from trusted sources like your app store, not from social media or ad links.
When buying online, utilize e-commerce solutions, such as Mobile Wallet, Visa Checkout or PayPal.
- Never purchase online—or by phone—from a retailer you don’t recognize.
- Never click on a link embedded in an unsolicited email or pop up.
- Keep antivirus and anti-malware software up to date.
Identity Theft Resources