December 23, 2020

Holiday Season Phone and Email Scams

Mobile phone with Amazon logo on the screen

The busy holiday season is here, and while this season may look different due to the pandemic, online shopping is at an all-time high. The increase in online shopping means cyber criminals are busier than ever.

There is a popular scam making its way across the country right now where scammers, purportedly from Amazon or Apple, call or email people conning them out of money or their banking credentials. Below are common variations of this scam and ways you can avoid being a victim.

A phone , green, decorative

Phone Scam Variations

Email green, Decorative

Email Scam

December 20, 2018

Security News – How to Avoid a Vishing Scam

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By now you probably know not to click on links that arrive unexpectedly via email (Phishing) or text (Smishing), but how about an old-fashioned telephone scam?   As people have become more educated on cybersecurity, criminals are turning to alternative scamming methods, including the telephone scam.

What is Vishing?

Vishing is the telephone-based scam that has even the most tech-savvy consumers falling victim. Vishing scams rely heavily on manipulation and social engineering to get potential victims to give up personal information such as PINs, Social Security numbers, credit card security codes, and passwords. Criminals typically pretend to be from an official organization such as a bank or the government and use “caller ID spoofing” which allows them to make phone calls that appear to be from legitimate organizations. Vishing calls can be from a live person, robot, or both.  With so many variables, it’s imperative to stay alert and keep your information protected.

Common vishing scams include:
  • Supposed fraud or suspicious activity on your bank account
  • Overdue or unpaid taxes to the IRS
  • Fake computer or IT support
  • Fake government agency
How to avoid vishing scams:
  • Never answer a call from an unknown number. Picking up may alert the scammer that the number is active and may lead to more calls down the road.  Instead, let the call go to voicemail.  If the scammer leaves a message, it will give you time to vet out the caller properly.
  • If you do answer, never give your personal information. Banks and government institutions will never ask for personal information over the phone.  If you are asked for personal information or feel uncertain to the legitimacy of the call, hang up and call back after crossing referencing the number online or on the back of your credit card. It is worth noting that government institutions like the IRS almost exclusively communicate by mail or occasionally email.
  • Don’t trust Caller ID. As mentioned above, scammers can use “caller ID spoofing” to make calls appear to come from a legitimate source.  While the call may be legitimate, keep your guard up and remember never give out personal information over the phone.

Again, keep in mind that River City Bank will never ask for your personal information by email or text.  Your personal and financial security is our top priority.  Should you have any questions or concerns regarding your account information or communication you have received from River City Bank, please do not hesitate to reach out to a customer service representative at (916) 567-2899 or (800) 564-7144.

January 19, 2018

Cybersecurity Tips

Protecting Your Data
Protecting Your Data

Cybersecurity best practices constitute an expansive list of things to do.  While in-depth security measures need to be implemented and managed by experts, you don’t need to be a cybersecurity pro to employ smart online safety habits that can go a long way in guarding against online crime. Small and simple steps, like the ones listed below, are just as important in helping to protect your data.

Stop. Think. Connect.

  • Click with care. Cybercriminals love to use holiday shopping and travel scams to gain access to information and computer systems. Scammers try to lure you to copycat websites of well-known brands or retailers by advertising great deals on hot-ticket items on social media sites or through search engines. Their goal: to deliver malware to your computer, steal your credit card number, or “phish” for personal information.
  • Lock it up! Never leave a device unattended and be sure you have strong passwords.
  • Search for the “S.” Look for the “https” instead of “http” on the web address of the payment page before you enter a credit card number or other personal information. The “s” stands for a secure connection which reduces the chance of online scams.
  • Connect with Caution. Most public Wi-Fi networks are not secure, so think twice before shopping or banking while on public Wi-Fi. Disable automatic Wi-Fi and Bluetooth before leaving home.
  • Download Updates. Installing updates can add new security patches to your apps, operating systems, anti-virus software, and other important programs. Be sure to download updates only from the official app provider.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Customer Service Department at (916) 567-2899 or (800) 564-7144 or visit your nearest branch.