Here at Teachers Federal Credit Union, we take the security of our member information very seriously. Using the most vigilant and preventative cybersecurity measures whenever handling personal information both in person and on the web. In today’s electronic environment where members and staff rely on online banking the most, it is extremely important that we continue to keep our members informed with the most current information regarding online fraud attempts against our credit union and its members.
Teachers will never contact members via phone, email, text message or cell phone to request personal information such as account numbers, passwords, debit or credit card numbers, expiration dates or (PIN) personal identification numbers.
The most common basic form of stealing information and committing fraud against members would be through phishing emails and calls. A phishing email is a falsified email composed to trick the recipient into believing that it derives from Teachers sources. A phishing call is when a caller claims to be a representative of Teachers, even spoofing the phone number so that it looks like they are calling from the credit union.
You should never communicate with any email from Teachers that:
- Requests that you provide your personal information via an email.
- Notifies you that your accounts will be closed or suspended if you do not respond or provide personal information immediately. This tactic is typically used to cause alarm and create a sense of urgency so that the user will take immediate action.
- Requests that you update your private information.
- Requests participation in a survey where you are asked to enter personal information.
- States that your account has been compromised, or that there has been third-party activity on your account, and requests you to enter or confirm your account information.
- States that there are unauthorized charges on your account and requests your account information.
- Emails claiming that you have won a lottery when you never entered one, offer of a large cash discount on something that you never purchased, large prize money in a contest that you never enrolled for and so on. The actual intention is usually to direct you to a site where the scammers can get your personal or financial information.
- Asks or links to another page that asks you to enter your User ID, password, Teachers member number, PIN or card expiration date.
- Asks or links to another page that asks you to confirm, verify, or refresh your account, credit card or billing information.
Teachers Federal Credit Union will never contact you through email or phone to request any of your account information, including:
- Social Security Number
- Credit or Debit Card numbers
- Security Code or CVV
- PIN - Personal Identification Number
- Date of Birth
- Online Banking Login Information
- Verification Codes
How to protect yourself from phishing attacks
Your email spam filters may keep many phishing emails out of your inbox, however scammers are always trying to outsmart spam filters, so it is a good idea to add extra layers of protection. Here are four steps you can take today to protect yourself from phishing attacks.
Steps to protect yourself from phishing:
- Review where the email is coming from– Who is the email really from? (Hover over the sender’s email). (Were you expecting this email?)
- Review the format and images contained in the email – Is formatting off? Are images poor quality? NOTE: We have re-branded, any previous logos in our emails are immediate red flags!
- Look for grammar and spelling errors. It is very likely that any email that contains poor grammar, punctuation or shows an illogical flow of content is more than likely written by inexperienced scammers and are fraudulent.
- Review the links contained within the email. Always place your cursor on the shortened link to see the target location before clicking on it.
- Does the email have anything to do with your recent account activity? Protect your computer by using security software. Set the software to update automatically so it can deal with any new security threats.
- Protect your mobile phone by setting software to update automatically. These updates could give you critical protection against security threats.
What to do if you encounter a suspected fraudulent, phishing email or call?
If you are suspicious of an email from someone possibly impersonating Teachers, do not give any information, and forward the email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will analyze the email to confirm its authenticity. If you are suspicious of a call, do not give any information, hang up and call Teachers directly at 631-698-7000.