in real life
Have you been phished? Help us protect you.
November 17th, 2006
Phishing, a method of identity theft, is when someone contacts you unexpectedly, claiming to be from a reputable company, asking you to verify personal information. While this appears to be a legitimate request for information, it is not. The most common method of phishing is email, but it can also occur through a phone call.
Some individuals have received emails appearing to be from First Exchange Bank (FEB), but they were not. First Exchange Bank does not utilize email to verify personal or account information. We consider our customers’ security and privacy one of our top priorities and no customer information was accessed from FEB records. Instead, the emails were sent to random individuals, both customers and non-customers. The emails stated that the individual should click on a link to a Web site and enter personal financial information. These attempts to convince individuals to provide personal information is termed "phishing." This site was copied from FEB’s website and looks convincing, including actual logos and banners. We have contacted appropriate agencies and with their assistance we are working aggressively to shut down this phony site and pursue criminal prosecution of the perpetrators.
If you have received a phishing email claiming to be from FEB, or if you have provided personal information on such an email, please contact Kim Sides, Vice President First Exchange Bank at (304) 986-1700 immediately.
How you can protect yourself and help us protect you?
Watch out for "phishy" emails and phone calls. If it seems phishy, then it probably is. Contact the company or bank immediately to confirm the email’s validity using a telephone number or Web address you know to be genuine.
Never confirm information over the phone or by clicking on a link in an email. Clicking the link in an email will take you to a site which is a replica of the legitimate retailer, bank, or organization. When you provide information on this phony site, you will be providing information to individuals for potentially illegal uses.
Only open email attachments if you are expecting them and know what they contain. The message may look like it is from someone you know, but could actually be from a con artist trying to get personal information.
Be suspicious if someone contacts you unexpectedly and requests personal information. Never give out your personal financial information in response to an unsolicited phone call, fax, or email, no matter how official it may seem. If you are contacted out of the blue and asked for personal information, then let it be a warning sign. Legitimate companies do not operate this way.