What is An Online Phishing Scam?

What is An Online Phishing Scam?

The FDIC defines the term "phishing"-- as in "fishing"-- as a type of deception designed to steal your valuable personal data, such as credit card numbers, passwords, account data, social security numbers or other information.

Phishers attempt to fraudulently acquire sensitive information, such as passwords and credit card details, by masquerading as a trustworthy person or business in an electronic communication. Phishing is typically carried out using email or an instant message, although phone contact has been used as well. Con artists might send millions of fraudulent e-mails messages that appear to come from Web sites you trust, like your bank or credit card company, and request that you provide personal information.

These fraudulent e-mail messages may claim to be from Southern Heritage Bank. These messages usually take an urgent tone asking you to "update" or "validate" your ATM, debit card, credit card, or other personal account information immediately or face consequences. They often include official-looking logos from real organizations and other identifying information taken directly from legitimate Web Sites.

You can avoid being taken in by these scams by keeping in mind these important points:

• Never respond to requests for personal information via e-mail.
• Southern Heritage Bank DOES NOT send urgent, time sensitive or contest e-mails, or

ones that ask you to provide, update or confirm sensitive data. We already have this

information on file and would not request it from you.
• We DO NOT send e-mails that ask you to provide personal information using a link or

input fields in the e-mail except in response to an inquiry YOU initiated.
If you suspect that you've responded to a phishing scam with personal or financial information or

entered this information into a fake Web site, take these steps to minimize any damage.

• Report the incident to Southern Heritage Bank and/or your credit card company. Contact the organization directly that you believe was the front for the scam along with the Federal Trade Commission. FTC: National Resource for Identity Theft at www.consumer.gov/idtheft

• Change the passwords on all your online accounts
• Set up a schedule to routinely review your Southern Heritage Bank statements and

those from your credit card companies
• Use the latest products and services to help warn and protect you from online scam,

by installing phishing filters or up-to-date antivirus and antispyware software.

Southern Heritage Bank, in an effort to educate the consumer on steps to take for protecting themselves, would like to direct you to a brochure available in a downloadable form through the FDIC's Web site at www.fdic.gov/news/news/press/2004/pr9304b.pdf .

Remember Southern Heritage Bank's website is www.shbnet.com .