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Privacy & Security

Fraud Prevention & Alerts

Important Fraud Alert:

iTHINK Financial Members Receiving Spoofed Phone Calls to Acquire Sensitive Information

iTHINK Financial has become aware of members receiving fraudulent phone calls from individuals claiming to be from the Credit Union Fraud Department. These fraudsters are using spoofing technology to make the phone calls appear to be coming from a legitimate iTHINK Financial phone number.

The fraudster claims that a fraudulent charge has been made on the member’s account and the member is asked to confirm his or her identity.

While iTHINK Financial actively monitors your accounts for potential fraud, please remember that we will NEVER initiate a call or email asking you to give us your card PIN, Online Banking username and password, or full card number. If you have any doubt about the validity of a phone call you receive from us, please hang up and call our direct number at 800.873.5100 to speak with us immediately.

Please also be aware that you can use our free Card Control service through Online Banking to lock your card until you are able to reach us. This will ensure that your card is protected until you are able to contact us.
 

Fraud News Feed

Coronavirus relief scam impersonates Joe Simons from the Federal Trade Commission

Fri, Jan 15, 2021

Scammers are at it again, pretending to be from a government agency to rip people off. Here’s what you need to know about the latest coronavirus relief fund scam.

Read More

Does your health app protect your sensitive info?

Wed, Jan 13, 2021

New health apps are popping up every day, promising to help you track your health conditions, count your calories, manage your medications, or predict your ovulation. These apps often ask for some of your most sensitive personal information, like your health history, medication list, or whether you have ever suffered a miscarriage.

Read More

Target for new COVID scam: Small business owners

Wed, Jan 13, 2021

There’s a new coronavirus-related scam making the rounds, but this time the crooks are targeting small businesses. It starts with an email that claims to come from the “Small Business Administration Office of Disaster Assistance.” It says you’re eligible for a loan of up to $250,000 and asks for personal information like birth date and Social Security number. Let’s do a CSI-style investigation to spot clues that the email is a fake.

Read More

Stimulus payments for people, not nursing homes

Mon, Jan 4, 2021

If you, or someone you care about, lives in an assisted living facility or nursing home, read on. Because the bill funding the second round of Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) has now been signed into law.

Read More

Wrapping up 2020 with more car wrap scams

Tue, Dec 29, 2020

We just heard from more companies that scammers are using their names to trick people into a car wrap scam. This time, scammers are saying they’re Marlboro or Purell (but they’re not really).

Read More

If you have federal student loans, read this

Tue, Dec 29, 2020

Several months ago, we told you that the U.S. Department of Education announced some flexibility to federal student loan borrowers. Understanding these options can help you make more informed decisions about paying your bills and prioritizing your debts. The benefits have been extended until January 31, 2021.

Read More

More money from the government?

Tue, Dec 22, 2020

Congress has just passed another bill to help the people whose finances are taking a beating from the pandemic. Once again, some of us will be getting money by check or direct deposit. The timing and details are still TBA, but here’s what we know:

Read More

New tools to fight gift card scams

Mon, Dec 21, 2020

This holiday season (and year-round), gift cards are on scammers’ wish lists. Scammers always have a reason for you to pay them immediately with a gift card. And they often tell you which card to buy and which store to visit. That’s why the FTC is launching a new Stop Gift Card Scams campaign to work with stores and law enforcement to fight these scams. And it’s also why the FTC has taken another look at reporting data to see what’s happening lately.

Read More

And a smart fridge in a pear tree

Mon, Dec 21, 2020

On this 12th and final day of consumer protection — just of this series, you understand, not ever — here are a few reminders as you head toward whatever holiday you celebrate (or don’t) this December. Whether you’re shopping for a fridge that reminds you that you’re out of milk (step OFF, appliances, I’ve got this) or some cozy slippers, remember:

Read More

All I want for Christmas…is what I ordered

Fri, Dec 18, 2020

You’ve probably spent a good part of 2020 doing some online shopping. Now that the holidays are here, you definitely want to be sure you — or your friends and family — actually get what you ordered. On this 11th day of Consumer Protection, take these steps to help Rudolph find his way to your house.

Read More

Fraud Alerts

March 20, 2019 – iTHINK Financial Members Receiving Spoofed Phone Calls to Acquire Sensitive Information

iTHINK Financial has become aware of members receiving fraudulent phone calls from individuals claiming to be from the Credit Union Fraud Department. These fraudsters are using spoofing technology to make the phone calls appear to be coming from a legitimate iTHINk Financial phone number.

The fraudster claims that a fraudulent charge has been made on the member’s account and the member is asked to confirm his or her identity.

While iTHINK Financial actively monitors your accounts for potential fraud, please remember that we will never initiate a call or email asking you to give us your card PIN #, Online Banking username and password, or full card number. If you have any doubt about the validity of a phone call you receive from us, please hang up and call our direct number at 800.873.5100 to speak with us immediately.

Please also be aware that you can use our free Card Control service through Online Banking to lock your card until you are able to reach us. This will ensure that your card is protected until you are able to contact us.

September 8, 2017 – What you need to know about the Equifax Data Breach

In a data breach lasting from mid-May through July, 143 million American consumers had their sensitive personal information exposed at Equifax, one of the three major credit reporting agencies.

During this breach, hackers accessed people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and some driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers, and dispute documents that included personal information.

What should you do now?

First, find out if you were one of the people whose information was exposed. Equifax has set up a website, www.equifaxsecurity2017.com, to check your status. Once on this site, click on the "Potential Impact" link and enter the information requested. Please make sure you are on an secure computer when entering your sensitive information.

Equifax is offering one year of credit monitoring, Social Security number monitoring, identity theft insurance, credit report lock, and copies of your credit report for free. You can enroll through their site through November 21, 2017.

Equifax also provides answers to frequently asked questions on their site.

Here are some other steps to take to help protect yourself after a data breach:
 

  • If you have an iTHINK Financial myChoice Checking, myDefense Checking,  or Grand Checking account, Identity Theft Protection Services and Credit Monitoring of the three major consumer credit bureaus are included at no charge. Make sure you are enrolled in the Credit Monitoring service to take full advantage of this great benefit!
     
  • Check your credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and Transunion for free by visiting annualcreditreport.com.
     
  • Consider placing a credit freeze on your files. A credit freeze makes it harder for someone to open a new account in your name. Keep in mind that a credit freeze won’t prevent a thief from making charges to your existing accounts.
     
  • Monitor your existing credit card and bank accounts closely for charges you don’t recognize.
     
  • If you decide against a credit freeze, consider placing a fraud alert on your files. A fraud alert warns creditors that you may be an identity theft victim and that they should verify that anyone seeking credit in your name really is you.
     
  • File your taxes early — as soon as you have the tax information you need, before a scammer can. Tax identity theft happens when someone uses your Social Security number to get a tax refund or a job. Respond right away to letters from the IRS.

 
Visit Identitytheft.gov/databreach to learn more about protecting yourself after a data breach.

Source: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/09/equifax-data-breach-what-do

March 28, 2017 – Employment scam using iTHINK Financial accounts

Please be aware of a new employment scam going around. An "employer" offers a job to an applicant through an online job listing site. As part of the job acceptance, the "employer" tells the applicant to open an account at iTHINK Financial, and even lists the nearest branches to visit. 

Once the account is open, the "employer" transfers money into the account and has the "employee" wire transfer money back to them on the same day.

When accepting a job, please know that a legitimate employer would never require you to send funds back for any reason. Please be careful.

June 09, 2015 – Important information regarding the U.S. Government data breach incident

It was recently announced that the U.S. Government has suffered a data breach affecting multiple Federal agencies and approximately 4 million individuals. The Federal Government has confirmed that the information hacked could be used to facilitate identity theft and fraud. The individuals affected are government employees and political appointees.

Below are recommended steps to remain vigilant against possible identity fraud:

  1. Be wary of emails or telephone calls that request information. Neither the U.S. Government nor our financial institution will ask you to provide any information in relation to this possible data breach incident.
  2. Check your Account Statements. Review your statements carefully and repeatedly. Any purchases, large or small, should be verified as a purchase you made.
  3. Check Your Mail and Your Email. Look for mail and emails addressed to you that you do not recognize. This may include credit card accounts, medical bills, or notices from companies with which you do not have a relationship.
  4. Get Help. You are not responsible for fraudulent transactions on your account, but you need to notify us as soon as possible if you see any suspicious activity. In addition, if you are concerned about fraud beyond the transactions on your current account, you may have access to an Identity Fraud Protection program that includes Fully Managed Identity Fraud Research, Remediation, and Recovery Services. We will submit your name to our Recovery Care Center and, within 24 business hours, you will be contacted by an Identity Recovery Advocate who will investigate the situation and work on your behalf to remediate any fraud. Contact us with any questions.
  5. Take Action. If you suspect that your identity has been compromised, you can place a fraud alert on your credit file by calling any one of the three major credit reporting agencies shown below. A fraud alert is a notation on your credit file to warn credit issuers that there may be a problem. The credit issuer is asked to contact you at the telephone number that you supply to validate that you are the person applying for the credit. This is not the same as credit monitoring.

TransUnion: 1.800.916.8800
Experian: 1.888.397.3742
Equifax: 1.800.685.1111

In accordance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act, it is permissible for consumers to request a free copy of their credit report once every 12 months from each of the three major credit reporting agencies (TransUnion, Experian and Equifax).

To order a free credit report:
Online: www.annualcreditreport.com or by Telephone: 1.877.322.8228

If your iTHINK Financial account includes identity theft protection, or if you have purchased an identity theft protection package from our website, and you suspect identity fraud of any kind, let us know. Whether it is financial or non-financial fraud, even if it is not connected to this incident or your account, we can help. You will be assigned to a certified, professional Identity Recovery Advocate at no cost to you. These professionals are standing by to answer questions, place fraud alerts, research potential fraud, dispute fraudulent transactions on your behalf, and perform the legwork to return you to pre-theft status, no matter how long it takes—all at no cost to you as a valued accountholder with iTHINK Financial.

We appreciate your trust in our financial institution. It is important to us to provide professional identity theft protection services for our iTHINK Financial accountholders for any identity theft incident that affects you and/or your family.

Fraud Education

Combat check fraud and identity theft

If you can answer Yes to any of the following questions regarding a Cashier’s or Official Check you intend to deposit, please notify your Teller or Member Service Representative immediately.

  • Do you have any reason to suspect that this check is not valid?
  • Have you recently advertised something for sale or purchased something over the Internet? If so, is this check payment for that item?
  • Have you been asked to wire, or otherwise return, a portion of the funds back to the sender or some other third party?
  • Have you recently received an email or letter stating you have won a sweepstakes or lottery? Are they claiming that all you need to do to collect your prize is provide them with your account number and other personal information so they can wire the funds into your account?
  • Have you recently accepted a job offer over the internet and received a payroll advance by check, or were asked for your personal information in order to process a wire into your account? Were you asked to return a portion of the payment for tax purposes?

Please be advised: If a Cashier’s or Official Check is returned as a counterfeit or forgery, the Credit Union will have no choice but to hold you liable for the loss. Your assistance in the prevention of Check Fraud and Identity Theft is greatly appreciated. Please let us know if you have any questions or need more information.

Keyloggers – what are they and how can you protect yourself?

A keylogger is a hidden computer program that records the keystrokes you make, online and offline. After keystrokes are logged, they are secretly stored on your computer for later retrieval, or sent, via the Internet, to a thief. The crook then examines the keylog with the hope of finding passwords, or other useful information that could be used to compromise the system or steal your identity.

Any information entered into the computer can be retrieved. For example, a keylogger can reveal the contents of your personal email, or the passwords you use to access online banking. Once they gain access to your financial information, crooks can transfer funds, change billing addresses, and make purchases, often without raising any suspicion. When someone steals your wallet or purse, you know there has been a breach of your personal information. The danger of keyloggers is that you often don’t know until it is too late.

Hackers and identity thieves will place keylogger programs on your system by embedding them in “free” software you download from the Internet or through automatic installations initiated by pop-up ads or email. Once installed, the software works invisibly to monitor and record your every move.

Here are some things you can do to protect yourself:

  • Adjust your internet settings to prevent your computer from installing programs automatically from the Internet or launching them automatically from email. Once you’ve disabled the automatic installation, you should see a prompt anytime an application attempts to install itself. Do not click OK, Yes, or Run This Program if prompted unless you trust the program and are fully aware of its purpose.
  • Update your operating system frequently. Make sure to perform all the suggested updates as soon as possible.
  • Configure your browser to use a higher security setting. In Internet Explorer, choose “Tools” >> “Internet Options,” and select the “Security” tab. Make sure that the Internet Zone is configured to Medium Security or above.
  • Avoid downloading software from non-trusted web sites, such as “warez” (illegal software) sites.
  • Install a firewall. Firewalls keep programs from contacting the Internet without your permission. Adware and Spyware cannot function without sending information from your computer to the Internet.
  • Scan your computer for Spyware. Free and paid services are available,

Don't get caught by a phishing scam

Phishing is an Internet scam that uses fraudulent emails to deceive consumers into disclosing their credit card numbers, bank account information, and other sensitive information.

Internet scammers send deceptive emails pretending to be from a company the victim has a relationship with. The email requests that the recipient update or validate his billing information in order to keep his account active. The email directs the victim to a look-alike Web site of the business, tricking him into responding to what looks like a legitimate request. The victim unknowingly submits his financial information to the scammers, who use it to make purchases and obtain credit.

If you get an email warning you that an account of yours will be shut down unless you confirm your billing information, do not reply or click on the link in the email. Instead, contact the company named in the email using a telephone number or website address you know to be genuine. iTHINK Financial would never initiate an email asking for your personal information. However, for identification purposes we may request information in response to an inquiry from you. Please call us at 800.873.5100 if you feel uncertain about the validity of an email you have received from us.

If you receive a fraudulent email, report the suspicious activity to the FTC by forwarding the email to spam@uce.gov. If you believe you’ve been scammed, file your complaint at www.ftc.gov, and then visit the FTC’s Identity Theft Web site (www.ftc.gov/idtheft) to learn how to minimize your risk of damage from identity theft.

Visit www.ftc.gov/spam to learn other ways to avoid email scams and deal with deceptive spam.

What should I do if I receive a scam letter or email?

First, it is important that you do not correspond AT ALL with the persons named in the scam letters. Any contact with the perpetrators puts you at risk of being scammed. Do not reply to their letters, emails, or call them by telephone. You can report cases of fraud to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). If you have been victimized and lost money due to such scams, you should contact your local Secret Service office. Contact information can be found under the U.S. Government section of your local white pages or on the Secret Service’s website

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