High Plains Bank would like to warn our customers about phony telephone calls and automated messages (robocalls) that pretend to be from reputable companies. This fraudulent activity is known as “phishing”. It attempts to acquire sensitive information, such as account numbers, PIN numbers, or passwords for use in accessing financial accounts. These “phishing” scammers have only phone numbers and geographic information. They do not have any personal financial information! We would like to inform you that High Plains Bank would never telephone you to verify or obtain your account or debit card information. Please DO NOT GIVE OUT PERSONAL INFORMATION OVER THE PHONE OR RELEASE INFORMATION TO THE INTERNET!
While High Plains Bank works to protect your banking privacy, you also play an important role in protecting your information. Here are a few steps you can take to protect your identity:
- Add your phone numbers to the national Do Not Call Registry at donotcall.gov or by calling 1-888-382-1222. Since February 2008, these registered telephone numbers will no longer expire off the list.
- Examine your credit card and financial institution statements immediately upon receipt to determine whether there were any unauthorized transactions. Report any that you find immediately to the financial institution.
- Each year, you are entitled to one free credit report through www.annualcreditreport.com or by calling 1-877-322-8228.
- Request a copy of your Social Security statements at ssa.gov/mystatement to be sure that no one else is using your social security number for employment
Every 5 Years
- Opt out of pre-screened credit offers by calling 1-888-567-8688 or at optoutprescreen.com.
Please read the other sections to learn about the different types of fraud and how to prevent them, from spyware and other computer fraud to mail and phone fraud to email phishing and web spoofing. Our Fraud Summary page provides more tips on how to protect yourself.
Contact us immediately at 580-822-4466 if you notice any suspicious or unusual activity related to any of your High Plains Bank accounts.
Hackers and Scams
Hackers will send a text that asks to redeliver a fake package and requests a small fee, typically a few dollars, but what they really want is your credit card data. So, to pay the redelivery fee, the scammer is hoping you will hand over your credit card details. The fraudster then charges you “for an expensive, difficult to cancel subscription or for an illegal product such as an unlawful movie streaming service,” BeenVerified explained.
Missed Delivery and Survey Scam
- A text about a missed delivery leads to a fake Amazon survey, with authentic-looking Amazon branding, asking you to rate the delivery experience. There is a bogus prize offered as an incentive to fill out the survey, such as an iPhone 12 or PlayStation 5.” And when the consumer inevitably wins, delivery of the prize costs $5,” according to BeenVerified. Payment of the delivery charge leads to signing up for “an expensive and difficult to cancel and often illegal subscription.”
Free Trial Scam
- Delivery calls or texts that offer a fake free trial. “These offers come with fine print buried on the order page that gives consumers a short time to receive, evaluate, and return the product to avoid being charged,” according to BeenVerified. For example, hidden terms and conditions may stipulate you’re signing up for a monthly subscription by accepting the free trial offer. “It’s often difficult to impossible to contact the seller to stop recurring charges, halt shipments, and get refunds,” BeenVerified added.
- After delivery scams, the second-most common scam was calls and text messages purportedly from the Social Security Administration. These scams threaten to cut benefits unless victims call a phone number or click on a link. The same warnings apply here that apply to all consumer cyber-scams. If you’re tricked into handing over sensitive personal information, the data can then be used by fraudsters in other scams — in addition to the risk of incurring unwanted charges. Or if you’re tricked into clicking on a link, that could result in downloading malicious software onto your device.
Identity Theft is the most popular and profitable form of consumer fraud. It occurs when someone uses your personal information such as your name, Social Security number, credit card number or other identifying information, without your permission to commit fraud or other crimes.
Protect Your Personal Information
- Safeguard passwords, PIN numbers and other account-accessing details or codes; never write that information on credit/debit cards or carry in a wallet or purse.
- Use great caution before providing personal information that could be used to access financial accounts through e-mail or the Internet.
- Never provide account information over the phone when contacted unexpectedly by someone claiming to be from a bank or credit union; follow up with the institution by phone or in person.
- Shred or tear up any documents containing banking or credit information, especially pre-approved credit offers, before you throw them away. To opt out of pre-approved credit card offers, call 1-888-567-8688.
Common Ways Identity Theft Can Happen:
“Old Fashioned” Stealing
- Thieves typically steal wallets and purses. They also steal mail such as credit card and bank statements, pre-approved credit card offers, check orders and other financial mail
- Thieves dig through trash looking for bills, financial or other personal information.
Change of Address
- Thieves modify or redirect your billing statements to another address by completing a “change of address” form.
- Thieves may send unsolicited Emails, pretending to be a financial institution or a company, asking you to click a link to update or confirm your personal or login information. The link is directed to a “spoof” website designed to look like a legitimate site.
- Thieves may use a card reader device to copy the card’s magnetic strip to duplicate without the card owner’s knowledge.
Monitor Your Accounts
Keep track of transactions on your accounts by logging in to High Plains Bank’s Online Banking, where you can view your activity as it is posted
High Plains Bank continually makes investments in state-of-the-art online banking security to ensure we protect the confidentiality of every customer’s online information and to provide the utmost security of every user.
Computer Protection Tips
- Update your computer operating system on a regular basis.
- Keep your browser current with the latest security updates.
- Use updated anti-virus software.
- Use updated anti-spyware software and consider using more than one, to ensure the most thorough scan.
- Change your passwords on a regular basis, as a good practice to help prevent unauthorized access.
- Download free software only from websites you know and trust.
- Do not install software without knowing exactly what it is or what it will do (read the end-user license agreement).
- Close pop-up ads by clicking on the “X” instead of clicking within the advertisement itself.
- Review your browser security settings and set them to a high enough level to help detect unauthorized downloads. (Click your browser’s “Help” menu for steps).
- Do not click link inside of spam email. Especially emails claiming to offer anti-spyware software.
- Install a personal firewall on your computer. A firewall works like a filter that prevents access to information on your computer.
- Don’t give any of your personal information to any web sites that do not use encryption or other secure methods to protect it.
Mail and Phone
We recommend you learn ways to protect yourself from common fraud schemes.
Vishing scams target consumers by “spoofing” text or voicemail messages that ask you to call a phone number and give your personal information. Here’s how it works:
- You receive a “spoof” email or text message about suspicious account activity.
- The text or voicemail message will ask you to call a “customer service” number.
- When you call the customer service number, a recording will ask you to provide personal information such as account numbers, passwords, a social security number, or other critical information.
- The recording may not mention the company’s name and could potentially be an indication the call is being used for fraud.
- You can also receive a phone call.
- The call could be a “live” person or a recorded message.
- The caller may already have your personal information, which may seem as if the call is legitimate.
Smishing is when consumers’ cell phones and other mobile devices are targeted with mobile spam. The spam, or text messages, attempt to trick consumers into providing personal information. Here’s how it works:
- You receive a fake text message, which may include a fraudulent link, asking you to register for an online service.
- The scammer attempts to load a virus onto your cell phone or mobile device.
- The scammer may also send a message ‘warning’ you that your account will be charged unless you cancel your supposed online order.
- When you attempt to log on to the website, the scammer extracts your credit card number and other personal information.
- In turn, your information is used to duplicate credit, debit and ATM cards.
- Scammers may also send you a text message again ‘warning’ you that your bank account has been closed due to suspicious activity.
- The text message will ask you to call a ‘customer service’ number to reactivate your account.
- When you call the number, you are taken to an automated voice mail box that prompts you to key in your credit card, debit card or ATM card number, expiration date and PIN to verify your information.
- Again, your information is used to duplicate credit, debit and ATM cards.
Lottery/Sweepstakes scams target consumers by a notification, which arrives through the mail, by email, or by an unsolicited telephone call. Here’s how it works:
- The notification advises you have won a prize, but you did not enter in any type of lottery or sweepstake by the promoter contacting you.
- The promoter will ask you to send payment to cover the cost of redeeming the prize when the prize does not exist.
- In this type of scam, you may rarely if ever receive any winnings in return.
Check Overpayment Scams
Check Overpayment scams target consumers who sell items through an online auction site or a classified ad. Here’s how it works:
- The seller takes a big loss when the ‘buyer’ passes a counterfeit cashier’s check, money order, corporate or personal check as payment.
- The counterfeit check is written for more than the agreed price.
- The ‘buyer’ will ask the consumer to wire back the difference after the check has been deposited.
- The check will more than likely bounce and the consumer becomes liable for the entire amount.
Tips for the Mailbox
- Deposit outgoing mail at the Post Office.
- Remove incoming mail from your personal mailbox as soon as possible, or use a P.O. Box or locked, secure mailbox.
- Request a mail hold from the United States Postal Service or call them at 1-800-275-8777 if you plan to be away from home for an extended period.
- Know your billing cycles. If bills are late or missing, contact your creditors.
- Watch for your new or replacement Check card from us. You should receive it within five business days.
- Switch to a more secure way of receiving your account statement. When you sign up for High Plains Bank Online E-Statements, your statement will no longer sit in your mailbox. Instead, we will send you an email when your statement is available through your secure Online Banking account.
Tips for the Phone
- Do not give out personal information, such as your account numbers, card numbers, Social Security, tax identification numbers, passwords, or PINs, unless you have initiated the call.
- We will not make an unsolicited call requesting your personal information.
- If you ever believe you are not talking to a representative of a legitimate company, hang up and call the phone number listed in the telephone book.
Contact us immediately at 580-822-4466 for if you notice any suspicious or unusual activity related to any of your High Plains Bank accounts.