FROM FUELIOWA: Member Alert - Protect Yourself and Your Company from Phishing Attempts
August 12, 2022
Member Alert - Protect Yourself and Your Company from Phishing Attempts FUELIowa urges members to be on the lookout for electronic phishing schemes targeting FUELIowa members and their vendors. FUELIowa has been made aware of several
phishing schemes coordinated via email where a marketer or vendor purports to send an email with updated bank routing information for receipt of payment. Unlike other phishing emails where the validity of the sender is easily uncovered, this rash of recent phishing attempts has no obvious tell to provide the recipient a clue that the message is fraudulent. To date, members have avoided the phishing scheme only after noticing an abnormal change in the location of their customer or vendors bank. Upon noticing the change, members followed up with a phone call to their customer or vendor and are discovering that no such change in banking information occurred. The following information is a good guide of what to do (or not do) when using digital communications. If You Receive a Suspicious Email
Do not reply, even if you recognize the sender as a well-known business or financial institution. If you have an account with this institution, contact them directly (phone call or in person) and ask them to verify the information included in the email.
Do not click any links provided in these emails, do not cut and paste them into a browser. This may download viruses to your computer, or at best, confirm your email address to phishers.
Do not open any attachments. If you receive an attachment you are not expecting, confirm with the senders that they did indeed send the message and meant to send an attachment.
Do not enter your personal information or passwords on an untrusted Web site or form referenced in this email.
Delete the message.
If You Responded to a Suspicious Email
Contact your financial institution. Report the content of the email and your actions to the security or fraud department.
File a police report. Contact your local police department.
Never Email Your Personal or Financial Information
Email is not a secure method of communicating sensitive information. Legitimate financial institutions will never ask for sensitive information via email.
Review Your Credit Card and Bank Account Statements The best way to monitor activity on your financial accounts is to carefully inspect your credit report yearly. Federal law requires the nation’s major credit reporting companies to give everyone a free credit report every 12 months. Once you have your report, look for inaccurate information or unfamiliar accounts. Check your bank and credit card accounts for any suspicious activity or unauthorized charges. Sign up for online statements if you do not already receive them to get the latest information. Use Caution with Tax Information From the Internal Revenue Service: "Scams can be sophisticated and take many forms. We urge people to protect themselves and use caution when viewing emails, receiving telephone calls or getting advice on tax issues. Keep your personal information safe and secure. Taxpayers should protect their computers and only give out their Social Security numbers when absolutely necessary." Use Email Etiquette
To ensure that your email isn't mistaken for an infected message:
Always include a clear, descriptive subject for your email.
Consider using a signature, your name and contact information, on your email.
Always include a mention of the attachment and a description of why you are sending it in the body of your email.
Use Security Best Practices
Use a unique password for each of your online accounts. Many people reuse a favorite password for multiple accounts, but if one of these accounts is compromised, they will all be at risk of data breach.
Run a full virus scan of your computer every month. To detect the latest viruses, you must use a current version of your anti-virus software and keep it updated.
Update your device's operating system with the latest security patches.
Keep your software updated, especially your Web browser, mobile operating system, Adobe Reader, and Flash Player.