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Tips for Safe Online Shopping
Here are 3 quick hints for staying safe while shopping online on Cyber Monday or any day of the year.
- Search for deals on retailer sites, not on search engines. Scammers can interfere with search results. Looking for the best deal on that new big screen TV? Try searching on sites like Best Buy, Amazon or Wal-Mart sites rather than Google.
- Watch carefully for suspicious links. Look for clues such as extra letters in a domain name. Take the time to make sure you are on the correct website. And always look for the HTTPS lock symbol in your browser address window when performing an online purchase.
- Be in control of your debit card security. If you have an American State Bank debit card, click here to register to receive text messages or emails when your card is used. In addition, you can lock and unlock your debit card because of suspected fraud or the card being lost.
12 Ways to Protect Your Mobile Device
Your mobile device provides convenient access to your email, bank and social media accounts. Unfortunately, it can potentially provide the same convenient access for criminals. American State Bank recommends following these tips to keep your information – and your money – safe.
1. Use the passcode lock on your smartphone and other devices. This will make it more difficult for thieves to access your information if your device is lost or stolen.
2. Log out completely when you finish a mobile banking session.
3. Protect your phone from viruses and malicious software, or malware, just like you do for your computer by installing mobile security software.
4. Use caution when downloading apps. Apps can contain malicious software, worms, and viruses. Beware of bogus programs and/or apps that feature simulated ad interactions or display intentionally misleading buttons or layouts. Also watch for apps that ask for unnecessary “permissions.”
5. Download the updates for your phone and mobile apps.
6. Avoid storing sensitive information like passwords or a Social Security number on your mobile device. However, if you choose to store passwords on your phone, consider using a “password keeper,” which allows you to store sensitive information using a passcode.
7. Tell your financial institution immediately if you change your phone number or lose your mobile device.
8. Be aware of shoulder surfers. The most basic form of information theft is observation. Be aware of your surroundings especially when you’re punching in sensitive information.
9. Wipe your mobile device before you donate, sell or trade it using specialized software or using the manufacturer’s recommended technique. Some software allows you to wipe your device remotely if it is lost or stolen.
10. Beware of mobile phishing. Avoid opening links and attachments in emails and texts, especially from senders you don’t know. And be wary of ads (not from your security provider) claiming that your device is infected.
11. Watch out for public Wi-Fi. Public connections aren't very secure, so don’t perform banking transactions on a public network. If you need to access your account, try disabling the Wi-Fi and switching to your mobile network.
12. Report any suspected fraud to your bank immed
What is .bank?
As online scams and breaches become more prevalent in today’s digital world, banks are looking for ways to ensure safe and secure online banking for their customers. So when American State Bank recently upgraded our website and online app, we switched our domain to .BANK instead of the traditional .com.
With this change, there are additional security features designed to keep you and your personal information safe. Our customers can now be certain that when they visit our website, or communicate with us electronically, there is less risk. The .BANK domain has been around a few years, but not many banks have adopted it yet. But since American State Bank’s recent merger and enhanced website, it was a great time to make a commitment to our customers – the commitment of security. How do we know it is more secure? .BANK domains signify that a company has been verified as a legitimate financial institution. Because of the additional security measures required to become verified, cyber threats can be better identified and stopped. The .BANK domain provides enhanced security against imposter sites so that customers can rest easy knowing their information is safe.
Security requirements for .BANK domains include:
• Mandatory verification of charter/licensures to ensure the organization is legitimate, the person requesting the domain name is authorized to do so, and that the domain name requested by the company complies with policies
• Domain name system security extensions to ensure that users are sent to the correct website and not a malicious website
• Email authentication to avoid fraud and spam • Multi-factor authentication to ensure that only authorized users can make changes to registration data
• Strong encryption to ensure protected communication
• Prohibition of proxy/privacy registration services to ensure full disclosure of domain registration information.