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Wednesday, May 18, 2022 - 08:04

These days, working from home is pretty common. It’s a win-win for both those hoping to avoid a commute, and companies looking for talent from all over the world. You might even get a call or message about a job opportunity — but how do you know it’s legit? If a company asks for sensitive info (like your Social Security number) before they hire you — or they say they need you to make an upfront payment — it’s a scam.

Scammers have been reaching out to people, pretending to be companies that offer at-home employment. These scammers are supposedly hiring for positions in data processing, among other fields. But after interested applicants finish long interviews, the interviewer says to give their Social Security number and other personal info. Then, the “company” sends them a check to “buy equipment.” But that check is for more than the amount needed, so they tell you to send the leftover money back to the company — or to someone else. That’s a scam.

Scammers promise you a job, but what they want is your money and personal information. So, before you accept a job offer:

  1. Do a search online. Look up the company’s name, email address and phone number, plus the words “scam,” “review” or complaint.”
  2. Start with sources you’re sure are legit. 
  3. Never bank on a “cleared” check. No legit employer will send you a check, tell you to buy stuff with it, and then ask you to send money to cover the balance. The check will bounce, and you’ll have lost the money you sent them.

– Federal Trade Commission

Monday, May 9, 2022 - 09:20

With technology, it’s easier than ever to connect with others as people are just a click or call away. Nobody knows that better than scammers — who might try to contact you about a supposed virus or malware they’ve “found” on your device. So, during this Older Americans Month, remember — if someone unexpectedly calls or messages you, claiming your computer’s security is at risk, it’s a scam.

It’s alarming to get this kind of random notification, especially if it sounds serious and looks legitimate. Scammers often pretend they’re tech support from a well-known company such as Microsoft or Apple. They expect you to open an email, text or pop-up if you see a familiar name. They may also try calling you, hoping you’ll react to an “urgent problem” with your computer. That’s how they get your personal information or money to “fix” it. They want you to pay for tech support you don't need, to fix a problem that doesn’t exist.

Here’s what to do:

  • If you get an unexpected call from someone saying there’s a problem with your computer, hang up. It’s a scam.
  • Don’t click any links in an unexpected message or email. Never call phone numbers left in voicemails, emails, texts or social media messages.
  • Don’t give your personal or financial information in response to an unexpected request. Legitimate organizations won’t call or message asking for your Social Security, credit card or bank account number or your password.
  • Update your computer’s security software. If you suspect a computer problem, run a security scan to find and remove malware. Turn on automatic updates so your security software can keep up with the latest protections against security threats. 

You might know these calls, messages and pop-ups are fakes — but you probably know someone who doesn’t. Please share this info with your friends and family, and pass it on to your community. Report scams to the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

Thursday, May 5, 2022 - 20:08

Bath State Bank is hiring for a full-time Teller/CSR at its Liberty Branch. Candidates must be willing to work from 7:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. Monday-Thursday, and every other Friday until 6 p.m. and some Saturdays. Applicants should be friendly, willing to help others and comfortable handling cash. Previous experience helpful, but not required.

Resumes should be sent to humanresources@bathstatebank.com (in Microsoft Word or .pdf format) or mailed to Attn: HR Manager, P.O. Box 10, Bath, IN 47010 before May 23. Bath State Bank is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer.

Tuesday, April 26, 2022 - 12:01

Over the last year, Fraud.org has received dozens of complaints involving scammers who requested remote access to consumers’ computers. In 2021, the median loss reported to Fraud.org from such scams was $1,100.

In a typical scenario, scammers pose as tech support and request control of the victim’s device. The victims are often told that this is necessary to remove a virus or update software. This is the first tell-tale sign of fraud.

No legitimate tech support service should reach out proactively to ask for remote access to your computer. In other cases, consumers may be responding to a scary pop-up message on their computers (often the result of malware) that demands hundreds of dollars to remove a virus or resolve some other computer problem. 

Handing over control of your device is one of the worst things you can do when it comes to cybersecurity. By providing remote access, you expose yourself to identity theft, financial loss and material harm. The hacker could access confidential information (such as your Social Security number, bank account information and passwords), breach other devices on your network, or drain your bank accounts. In more sensitive industries, such as healthcare and governmental fields, malicious actors could exploit remote access to shut down critical infrastructure.  

Once you allow someone else to take control of your computer, you can never be sure what they are doing with the device. After gaining remote access, a common scam involves the fraudster manipulating the consumer’s device to appear as if the scammer accidentally deposited a large sum of money into the victim’s bank account. In reality, they never deposited a single cent. When they transfer the money out of the victim’s account, they are actually draining the victim’s own funds while making it appear as if they only reclaimed their “accidentally deposited” money. Once a scammer gains remote access, they can also easily install malware without the victim’s knowledge, causing even greater harm to the user.  

To reduce your risk of falling victim to these scams, consider the following tips: 

  1. Do not give anyone the ability to remotely access your personal device. Generally, once you have relinquished control of your computer, it is very difficult to regain complete security.  
  2. Double check tech support’s identity. If someone reaches out to you, don’t immediately believe that they are who they say they are. It’s best for you to be the one who initiates software help requests via a trusted and verified website. 
  3. Double check software updates’ validity. Scammers are known to suggest that they need remote access to install and update. A simple online search of the software update should return announcements of the update by the manufacturer, if it is a genuine update as well as instructions on how to install it. 
  4. Don’t trust time-sensitive demands. Legitimate tech support and software updates will not pressure you to act within minutes, especially when remote access or payment is involved. 
  5. Get help in person. Although this is not always possible, visiting your manufacturer’s local storefront for tech support is a much safer way to verify that you’re dealing with a professional.  

Be an ally in the fight against fraud! 

If you suspect that you or someone you know has become a victim of a remote access scam or any other fraud — report it at once. -- Excerpt from Fraud.org

Monday, April 25, 2022 - 15:34

We have instant issue debit cards in the event that your card is compromised, lost or stolen. Just stop by any Bath State Bank location during regular lobby hours to receive a new or replacement debit card or health savings debit card, and begin making purchases that same day.

Monday, April 18, 2022 - 11:43

Mark your calendar for our free Electronic Waste (eWaste) Day event on Friday, April 22 at BATH STATE BANK in West College Corner (US 27) from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. This is for electronics only. 

No early drop-offs. We won’t have containers set up until 10 a.m.

Electronics recycling is being provided by Cobalt, a certified recycler based in Middletown, Ohio. Cobalt is a subsidiary of Cohen Recycling, a family-owned company that has been helping businesses and individuals recycle safely and conveniently since 1924. All electronics from this event will be transported by Cobalt to its secure processing center where they ensure that all data is destroyed before the devices can be dismantled and recycled. 

Cobalt is certified by R2 for accountability to comprehensive environmental, data security, and health and safety standards. When you recycle with a certified partner, you can be sure that your eWaste and your personal information are being disposed of in the safest way possible. As a rule of thumb, if the item in question is made of metal, uses household batteries or plugs in, Cohen can recycle it. 

Alternators
Cameras
Chargers/Adapters
Circuit Boards
Coffee Makers
Computer Speakers
Computers
Copy Machines
Docking Stations
Fax Machines
Gaming Consoles
Grills (cleaned out)
Hard Drives
Headphones
Keyboards/Mice
Laptops/iPads/Tablets
Lamps
Microphones
Microwaves
Modems
Monitors
Network Gear
Phones (cell and land)
Portable Electronics
Power Strips
Power Tools
Printers
Routers
Scanners
Small household appliances
Toasters
VCR/DVD/CD Players
TVs

Wednesday, April 13, 2022 - 15:15

Let’s say you learn that an identity thief took out credit in your name, pretending to be you. To straighten it out, you might want to get records about the identity theft from the company where it happened. The law gives you that right — in fact, it’s Section 609(e) of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA.)

Having details about the theft and the thief may help you show, for example, that the thief borrowed money, not you. It also may help you or law enforcement identify the thief. You or law enforcement might need, for example, the identity thief’s bank account number or their contact information to document the crime or clear your name.

To get information related to your identity theft, send your request in writing to the company where the fraud took place. They have 30 days to give you those records, free of charge. Along with your request, send these three things: 

  1. Proof of your identity, like a copy of your driver’s license or other valid form of identification
  2. A completed FTC Identity Theft Report from IdentityTheft.gov.
  3. A police report about the identity theft from your local police department. When you file the police report, bring your ID, the FTC Identity Theft Report, and any information you have about the incident with you.

IdentityTheft.gov has more resources to help you recover from identity theft, including a sample letter to use as you take steps to fix problems the theft may have caused. If you have problems getting the records from banks and lenders, let the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) know.

-- Provided by the FTC 

Monday, April 11, 2022 - 09:05

Did you know that you have the ability to rename your accounts in Bank by Mouse? If you have multiple accounts, this feature may help you keep your accounts straight.

Each account is given a default name: the type of account followed by four digits. For example: “EH0005” could be an Early Harvest Money Market Account. 

You have the ability to rename that within your Bank by Mouse screen to anything under 21 characters, such as “Dan Early Harvest.” This could help keep accounts straight if you have multiple accounts such as children or joint accounts.

To rename your accounts, go to “Options” and then “Account.”

Friday, April 1, 2022 - 09:52

Don't be caught off-guard when it comes to scams. Scammers pressure you to wire money to them because it’s easy to take YOUR money and disappear. Wiring money is like sending cash — once it’s gone, you probably can’t get it back. Never wire money to a stranger — no matter the reason they give.

Scammers know that:

  • Once you wire money to them, there’s usually no way to get your money back
  • They can pick up your money at any of the wire transfer company’s locations
  • It’s nearly impossible to identify who picked up the money, or track them down

Never wire money to:

  • Anyone you haven’t met in person
  • Anyone who says they work at a government agency like the IRS, SSA or a well-known company
  • Anyone who pressures you into paying immediately
  • Anyone who says a wire transfer is the only way you can pay

Also never wire money to someone who tries to sell you something over the phone. It’s illegal for a telemarketer to ask you to pay with a wire transfer. — FTC Consumer News

Friday, March 25, 2022 - 08:44

For so many of us, cell phones and computers are embedded in our personal and professional lives. We talk and text, we browse the web, we watch and we create. Our devices store a lot of personal information, so it’s a good idea to take a few minutes to make sure your computer, phone and other connected devices are protected.

Update your software: Software developers release updates — to software, operating systems and internet browsers — to patch vulnerabilities before attackers can exploit them. Some programs are pre-set to update automatically. Make sure you use a reputable company, and double-check the URL before downloading.

Check your settings and turn on automatic updates to keep up with the latest protections against security threats. If your software is not set to update automatically, you’ll have to update it manually.

The same principles apply for your phone: Set it to update automatically. Otherwise, keep an eye out for updates, and don’t delay in running them. Update your apps, too.

Protect your accounts: Besides securing your devices, protect your accounts. Start with strong passwords and enable multi-factor authentication. When it comes to passwords, longer is stronger: at least 12 characters. You could use a passphrase of random words to help you remember it — but avoid common words or phrases. If your username and password are leaked in a breach, having multi-factor authentication enabled will make it harder for a scammer to get into your account.

Back up important data: As an extra precaution, back up your important data. Save your files to an external storage device, like a USB flash drive or an external hard drive. – FTC Consumer Advice