Data Protection

Protecting Yourself and Your Funds

At CUTX, we take your security very seriously, whether that means the security of your assets or your personal security. On this page, you’ll find helpful information and a number of security measures that you can take to protect yourself and your hard-earned money.

Identity theft is on the rise but you can rest easy knowing you are protected by our comprehensive IDProtect® service that comes with our Secure and Secure PLUS checking accounts.

Our comprehensive identity protection services includes:

  • 3-bureau credit file monitoring
  • Unlimited access to your credit report
  • Total identity monitoring of over 1000 databases covering all 7 categories of ID Fraud
  • Identity theft resolution services and more.
Click Here for more information on our Secure and Secure PLUS checking.

  • Promptly remove mail from your mailbox.
  • Carry only essential credit cards and identification.
  • Report all lost or stolen credit cards or checks immediately.
  • Check all statements carefully to ensure you have authorized all charges.
  • Maintain a list of the credit cards you use and cancel the ones you do not use.
  • Don't carry your Social Security card or birth certificate—leave them in a secure place.
  • Store all personal information in a safe place and shred old credit card receipts, old account statements, and unused credit card offers before discarding.
  • Write down or photocopy the front and back of all credit cards and keep in a secure location. Do the same for all bank and investment accounts.
  • Don't give out personal information over the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you've initiated the contact or are sure you know whom you're dealing with.

Additional resources:

Text Message Scams

These scams involve unsolicited text messages sent to cell phones. The message urges the recipient to call a number provided for information about account discrepancies and then solicits individual account information and PIN numbers. Cell phone users should be wary of unsolicited text messages. Such messages should be deleted and all deleted text messages should be removed.

ATM/Debit Card Fraud

Perpetrators have begun targeting ATM and debit cards as a primary source to gain unauthorized access to your accounts. Many new ATM cards double as debit cards and, even without knowing your PIN (Personal Identification Number), a crook can clean you out. Scammers may gain access to your card number (not the card itself) in a variety of ways:
  • A thief may find your discarded receipts/carbons in the trash
  • A dishonest clerk makes an extra imprint of your card for his personal use
  • You are tricked into giving your card number over the phone or on the Internet

Jury Duty Scams

A scammer calls claiming to work for the local court and claims you've failed to report for jury duty. He tells you that a warrant has been issued for your arrest. The victim will often rightly claim they never received the jury duty notification. The scammer then asks the victim for confidential information for "verification" purposes. Specifically, the scammer asks for the victim's Social Security number, birth date, and sometimes even for credit card numbers and other private information — exactly what the scammer needs to commit identity theft. Simply hang up the phone.

Online Job Scams

People are being solicited for what appears to be a lucrative position that will allow them to work as an independent agent or from their home. Tips to avoid this type of scam:

  • Be cautious of any employer offering employment without an interview (either in person or by phone). Please investigate thoroughly any employer requesting that you transfer funds or receive packages for reshipment, especially if they are located overseas. Most of these employment offers are check-cashing or shipping scams! Do not provide your social security number or any other sensitive information unless you are confident that the employer is legitimate.
  • Be cautious of job links sent to you in emails…they could be phishing scams.

Account Verification

An unsolicited email or telephone caller asks you to verify your account information including personal information. Companies will never ask you to verify your password or ask for credit card information via email or by a telephone call that you did not initiate.

Travel Fraud

While some travel opportunities sold over the phone or offered through the mail, Internet or by fax are legitimate, many are scams that defraud consumers out of millions of dollars. Don't give your credit card number or bank information over the phone unless you know the company.

Advance Fee Scams (aka Nigerian 419 Scam)

A so-called “representative” of a foreign government asks you to help move money from one account to another. You are then asked to provide up-front or advance fees for various taxes, attorney fees, transaction fees or bribes.

Lottery Scams

Fraudsters use e-mail, in conjunction with letters and phone calls, to convince victims they’ve won an overseas lottery. The scammer's goal is to trick consumers into sharing bank account numbers or paying up-front fees to claim winnings that never materialize. Example of a Real Life Lottery Scam.

Bank Scams

A so-called “representative” of your financial institution calls and says they have discovered someone is writing checks on your account. The caller instructs you to retrieve your checkbook and read the number along the bottom of the check from left to right. Of course financial institutions will not call and request you read back your account number (which they assigned to you) over the phone. Hang up and report the incident. Example of a Real Life Bank Scam.

Mail Fraud

Thieves steal mail from postal trucks, collection boxes, apartment mailbox panels, and neighborhood delivery and collection boxes. They want your checks, your credit card applications, your bank account statements. Report mail theft online. Here's what you can do to protect your mail from thieves:

  • Sign up for CUTX eStatements and reduce the risk of your statement being lost or stolen in the mail. Never send cash or coins in the mail. Use checks or money orders. Promptly remove mail from your mailbox after delivery, especially if you're expecting checks, credit cards, or other negotiable items. If you won't be home when the items are expected, ask a trusted friend or neighbor to pick up your mail. Have your local post office hold your mail while you're on vacation, or absent from your home for a long period of time. If you don't receive a check or other valuable mail you're expecting, contact the issuing agency immediately. If you change your address, immediately notify your post office and anyone with whom you do business via the mail. Always deposit your mail in a mail slot at your local post office, or hand it to your letter carrier.
  • Consider starting a neighborhood watch program. By exchanging work and vacation schedules with trusted friends and neighbors, you can watch each other's mailboxes (as well as homes).

Check Washing

Scammers chemically remove ink from a stolen check. The check is then re-written to a different merchant or company for a higher amount and cashed. Here are some preventative tips:

  • Use online bill payment services to reduce your chances of thieves getting ahold of your checks. CUTX Bill Payer is a free perk to our Advantage, Mature Options and Premier Checking accounts.
  • Consider starting a neighborhood watch program. By exchanging work and vacation schedules with trusted friends and neighbors, you can watch each other's mailboxes (as well as homes).
  • Secure your signature with a special pen. These pens contain special color pigments that “trap” ink in the paper, making check washing virtually impossible. The pens can be purchased for less than $2 at most office supply stores and come recommended by former master forger Frank W. Abagnale. Mr. Abagnale, whose life is chronicled in the blockbuster movie “Catch Me If You Can,” is one of the world’s most respected authorities on the subjects of forgery, embezzlement and secure documents. Visit www.abagnale.com to learn more on about preventing check fraud.
Step 1

Notify the police and file a complaint.

Step 2:

Contact the fraud departments of any one of the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit file.

Equifax
Order a report: (800) 685-1111
Report fraud: call (800) 525-6285 and
Write to: P.O. Box 740256,
Atlanta, GA 30374

Experian
Order a report: (888) 397-3742
Report fraud: call (888) 397-3742 and
Write to: P.O. Box 9532,
Allen, TX 75013

TransUnion
Order a report: (800) 888-4213
Report fraud: call (800) 680-7289 and
Write to: P.O. Box 6790,
Fullerton, CA 92834

Step 3:

Alert Credit Union of Texas and any other financial institutions you do business with to flag your accounts and to inform you of any unusual activity.

Step 4:

Contact your creditors to inform them of the problem.

Step 5:

Contact other authorities, if you choose, to report fraud:
What is Phishing?

Phishing is a scam where e-mails are sent falsely claiming to be a legitimate company, in an attempt to obtain non-public personal information for identity theft. Once again, don't give out personal information over the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you've initiated the contact or are sure you know whom you're dealing with.

What is Vishing?

Vishing is the practice of using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology in an attempt to obtain non-public personal information for identity theft. The term is a combination of "voice" and phishing. The victim receives a phone call in which an automated recording "alerts" them to fraudulent activity on their account. The victim is then instructed to call a number in which their account information is requested for verification purposes. The scammer may even manipulate caller ID to make it appear legitimate.

Again, never respond to any unsolicited request to provide or confirm any of your personal information.

Automated Teller Machines provide quick, convenient access to your accounts, but there are some safety precautions you should always take when visiting an ATM.

Keeping your ATM card secure:

  • Protect your ATM card as if it were cash. Report a lost or stolen CUTX card immediately—call (972) 263-9497. Safeguard your Personal Identification Number (PIN). Never leave your receipt behind—even with an incomplete transaction. Do not give out any information about your ATM card over the telephone.
  • Check receipts against your monthly statement to guard against fraud.
  • If your card has an embedded chip, please keep the card in a safety envelope to avoid undetected and unauthorized scanning.
  • If your card is lost or stolen, immediately call us to reduce the chance that it will be used improperly. Immediate notice of a lost or stolen card will also limit your potential liability for unauthorized transactions.
  • Never disclose information about your card in response to an unsolicited e-mail, internet, or phone request. E-mail is a common channel for fraud perpetration. Never provide your debit or credit card number, PIN or any other non-public personal information to anyone, unless to a trusted merchant in a call or transaction initiated by you. CUTX will never ask you for your PlN.
  • Review your account statements for unauthorized transactions. Promptly report any errors to us.
  • ATM transactions and PIN debit purchases require the use of a secret code known as a personal identification number or PIN. Memorize your PIN; NEVER write it on your card or store it with your card. Never let anyone else enter your PIN for you. If making a purchase online, end transactions by logging out of the website instead of just closing the web browser.

Security at Walk-Up and Drive-Up ATMs:

  • Always observe your surroundings before conducting a transaction. Minimize your time at the ATM—have your card out and ready to use. Give people ahead of you space to conduct their transactions. Block the view of others when using the ATM. If an ATM is obstructed from view or poorly lit, go to another ATM.
  • If you see anyone or anything suspicious while conducting a transaction, cancel your transaction and leave immediately.
  • Inspect ATM machines before use for possible tampering, or for the presence of an unauthorized attachment that could capture information from the card or your PIN.
  • Refrain from displaying cash by putting it away as soon as possible. Only count your cash when you feel it is safe to do so.
  • Shield the keypad as necessary when entering your PIN and transaction amount so that others cannot observe the entry.
  • Always save your ATM receipts; never leave them at the ATM because they may contain important account information.

In order to maintain the confidentiality of private information sent via email, while ensuring compliance with privacy and regulations, we are implementing a new email encryption service through Zix Corporation, a leader in email encryption services. This service will help us protect sensitive information such as social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, and account numbers. Any Credit Union of Texas emails containing sensitive information will be encrypted. You will be able to receive these encrypted email messages easily through the Secure Message Center.

How to Send a Secure Email:

  • Go to the Secure Message Center.
  • If you have not registered an email address, click the "Register for a New Account" link and follow the registration instructions.
  • If you have already registered an email address with the Credit Union of Texas Secure Message Center, enter your email and your password.
  • Click the Compose Tab.
  • Enter the requested information.

Learn more about our email encryption service:

Credit Union of Texas is committed to protecting your personal information, and we are pleased to provide you this easy-to-use solution.

 

Other Fraud Prevention Resources

 

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