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Helpful Tips in Honor of Data Privacy Day

Author: Blake Jones/Tuesday, January 27, 2015/Categories: News Release

GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (January 27, 2015) -- In recognition of National Data Privacy Day on Wednesday, January 28, Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Company is urging customers to take an active role in protecting their data.

“Glens Falls National Bank’s first priority is protecting our customers’ money and information,” said Tom Murphy, President and CEO. “We use a combination of safeguards, and we encourage our customers to do the same.”

To help ensure the safety of personal information, Glens Falls National offers the following four tips:

1. Create “c0mplic@t3d” passwords. Use a mix of special characters, letters and numbers. Avoid birthdays, pet names and simple passwords like 12345. It is also important to change passwords at least three times a year. Theft by someone the victim knows is the most common type of identity theft or fraud, so don’t share your passwords with family members and be mindful of who has access to your personal information.

2. Keep tabs on your accounts. Check account activity often online or by phone, instead of waiting for the monthly statement to arrive in the mail. You are the first line of defense because you know right away if a transaction is fraudulent. If you notice unusual or unauthorized activity, notify your bank right away. When a customer reports an unauthorized transaction in a timely manner, the bank will take measures to help protect the account.

3. Stay alert online. Be sure computers and mobile devices are equipped with up-to-date anti-virus and malware protection. Never give out your personal financial information in response to an unsolicited email, no matter how official it may seem. A bank should never contact you by email asking for your password, PIN or account information. Avoid opening links and attachments - especially from senders you don’t know. When submitting financial information on a website, look for the padlock or key icon at the top or bottom of your browser, and make sure the Internet address begins with “https” – this signals your information is secure during transmission.

4. Mobilize your defenses. Use the passcode lock on your smartphone and other devices. This will make it more difficult for thieves to access your information if your device is lost or stolen. Before you donate, sell or trade your mobile device, be sure to wipe it using specialized software or using the manufacturer’s recommended technique. Some software allows you to wipe your device remotely if it is lost or stolen. Use caution when downloading apps, as they may contain malware.

Tips for Victims:

If you are a victim of fraud and suspect your personal information has been compromised, you should take the following steps:

  • Call your bank and credit card issuers immediately so they can take necessary steps to protect your account.
  • File a police report and call the fraud unit of the three credit-reporting companies.
  • Consider placing a victim statement in your credit report and a fraud alert on your account.
  •  Keep a log of all the contacts you make with authorities regarding the matter. Write down names, titles, and phone numbers in case you need to contact them again or refer to them in future correspondence.
  • Contact the FTC’s ID Theft Consumer Response Center at (877) ID THEFT or www.ftc.gov/idtheft.

Data Privacy Day commemorates the 1981 signing of the first legally binding international treaty dealing with privacy and data protection. It is led by the National Cyber Security Alliance, a nonprofit, public private partnership focused on cyber security education for all online citizens.

Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Company provides banking, investment, insurance and other financial services through 30 locations offices in Warren, Washington, Saratoga, Essex and Clinton counties. It is rated a 5-Star Superior institution by BauerFinancial.

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