Fraud CenterPhishing How Phishing Works
Typically, you'll receive an e-mail that appears to come from a reputable company that you recognize and do business with, such as a bank. In some cases, the e-mail may appear to come from a government agency, including one of the federal regulatory agencies. The e-mail will probably warn you of a serious problem that requires your immediate attention. It may use phrases, such as "Immediate attention required," or "Please contact us immediately about your account." The e-mail will then encourage you to click on a button to go to the institution's Web site. In a phishing scam, you could be redirected to a phony Web site that looks exactly like the real thing. Sometimes, it may be the company's actual Web site. In those cases, a pop-up window will quickly appear for the purpose of harvesting your financial information. In either case, you may be asked to update your account information or to provide information such as your Social Security number, account number, password or the information you use to verify your identity. See a Phishing example Pop-up windows
Fraudsters may use pop-up windows - small windows or ads - to obtain personal information. These windows may be generated by programs hidden in free downloads such as screen savers or music-sharing software. To protect yourself from harmful pop-up windows, avoid downloading programs from unknown sources on the Internet and always run anti-virus software on your computer. If you provide the requested information, you may find yourself the victim of identity theft. It is important to remember that we will never initiate a request for sensitive information via e-mail. If you receive an e-mail you believe to be fraudulent, please contact us.