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Phishing and Vishing Awareness Notice

Please be aware. Fraudulent e-mails appearing to be from reputable companies and businesses or government agencies are still on the rise. The Internet scam known as "phishing" is an attempt to obtain your personal financial information. In a phishing scam, you may be warned of a serious problem that requires immediate attention or be redirected to a phony website site that looks exactly like the real thing.

Likewise, in another scam known as “vishing,” crooks use the comfort of your telephone to claim to be with a legitimate financial institution or other entity. These thieves ask consumers to “re-activate” their online banking account, or “verify” or re-submit” personal information. The name itself explains this trick: “v” stands for “voice (on the phone), while the “ishing” is borrowed from “phishing.”

Here are some common characteristics of fraudulent emails and websites, as well as "vishing" telephone calls:

  1. They often have a sense of urgency telling customers that if they fail to update, verify or confirm their personal account information, access to their accounts will be suspended.
  2. They typically ask for personal account information such as:
    • Account numbers
    • Credit and check card numbers
    • Social security numbers'
    • Online Banking sign-in IDs and passwords
    • Mother's maiden name
    • Date of birth
    • Other sensitive information
  3. They often include links that include a legitimate company's name or website address, or impersonate someone from one of those companies
  4. The fraudulent emails will disguise or forge the sender's email address so they appear to be from a legitimate company, and the “vishing” telephone calls may use a fake Caller ID phone number
  5. The emails and pop-up websites may include misspelled words and incorrect grammar.

How to protect yourself from online and telephone fraud

  1. Never provide personal or financial information to unsolicited email, phone or pop-up website requests
  2. Type website addresses into internet browsers instead of clicking on links in emails
  3. Change passwords and PINs every 30 to 60 days
  4. Keep anti-virus software on your computers up to date
  5. Monitor accounts and credit reports. The three major credit bureaus are:
    • Equifax 1-800-525-6285
    • Experian 1-888-397-3742
    • TransUnion 1-800-680-7289

Northfield does not send emails or make telephone calls soliciting customers or requesting personal information

The only email we send is verification email and approval email for online banking. If you receive any emails appearing to be from Northfield Bank asking for personal information, please disregard the email and contact us immediately at 1-718-448-1000, extension 532 or at abuse@eNorthfield.com.

Click here to view a sample of a Phishing Email

If you fall victim to a phishing or "vishing" scam, act immediately to protect yourself by alerting us, placing fraud alerts on your credit files and monitoring your accounts closely. Also report suspicious emails to the Federal Trade Commission at www.consumer.gov/idtheft or by calling 1-877-IDTHEFT.

Information Sharing

Please be alert to organizations that offer "free services" such as email virus scanning but have loosely defined "privacy policies" that allow them to harvest and share information that is universally considered to be personal and highly sensitive. These companies ask users to configure their internet browsers to cause all web traffic to be decrypted, then used technologies to intercept sensitive personal information before passing it on to the intended destination. Always use caution when reviewing privacy policies and acceptance terms.

If you receive any emails or telephone calls appearing to be from Northfield Bank, please contact us immediately at abuse@eNorthfield.com

Updated 9/10/09