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Cybersecurity Awareness

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Cybersecurity Awareness

As technology has progressed, so have the types of crimes that can be committed by exploiting the technology we use every day. Raccoon Valley Bank  takes the protection of your personal and financial information very seriously, and wants to give you the resources you need to protect this information yourself from security threats such as identity theft, phishing and pharming. The following are definitions and tips from Raccoon Valley Bank  for preventing identity theft, phishing and pharming, and keeping your information safe.

Identity Theft

Identity theft is a crime that allows criminals to wipe out your bank accounts and use your credit information to their advantage.

Identity Theft Prevention Tips

  • Do not give out personal or financial information over the phone, through email or over the internet (including email) unless you can confirm who you are speaking to.
  • When sending mail, deposit it at your local post office. Collect your mail every day, and notify the post office to put a hold on your mail if you will be gone for a period of time.
  • Shred any mail with personal or financial information on it before throwing away or recycling.
  • Store all personal information (Social Security cards, passports, birth certificates) in a safe place, and be sure to protect your passwords and PINs. Try to memorize them so you don’t have to write them down.
  • Change all of your passwords, especially those for any financial services such as Online Banking, regularly.
  • Create a strong password: ten characters or more, upper and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols should be used.
  • Destroy old or expired debit and credit cards before throwing away.
  • Go over your monthly bank or credit card statements to review your transactions for fraudulent purchases.
  • When shopping online, never input debit or credit card information to a site unless it is secure (the web address will start with “https” and there will be a padlock symbol in the address bar or at the bottom of the page).
  • Do not carry your Social Security card around in your wallet.
  • Check your credit score once annually from each of the three credit reporting bureaus:
  • Experian, 1-888-387-3742
  • TransUnion, 1-800-680-7289
  • Equifax, 1-800-525-6285

What do I do if I think I’ve been a victim of identity theft?

First, you will need to contact the fraud departments at all three of the credit reporting bureaus and have them place a freeze on your credit. Next, you will need to contact the security departments of any creditors that you believe have been accessed or opened. Finally, you should file a police report with your local police department and may want to do the same with the police department of where the identity theft took place.

Identity theft is a crime that can ruin lives. By following these tips you can help decrease your chances of becoming a victim of identity theft significantly. If you a have any other questions you can find more information at the Federal Trade Commission’s website.


Phishing is a cybercrime involving emails, text messages or phone calls from someone posing as a legitimate institution to lure individuals into revealing sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, account numbers, PINs and credit card numbers.


  • Protect your computer by using security software and set the software to update automatically so it can deal with any new security threats.
  • Protect your mobile phone by setting software to update automatically. The updates can give you protection against security threats.
  • If you receive an email or text message that asks you to click on a link or open an attachment, first ask yourself: Do I have an account with the company or know the person that contacted me?
    • If the answer is "no", it could be a phishing scam, and you should immediately delete the message.
    • If the answer is "yes", contact the company using a phone number or website you know is legitimate, not the information in the email. Attachments and links can install malware on your computer or phone.
  • Avoid non-valid websites by typing the web address directly into the address bar on your web browser.
  • Never directly respond to an email asking for personal information.

Raccoon Valley Bank will never call or send emails or text messages requesting confidential information. If you receive such a call, email or text please notify us and do not follow any instructions in the message. 


Pharming is a cybercrime involving malicious code and fraudulent websites. Cybercriminals install malicious code on a user's computer or server which misdirects the user to fraudulent websites without their knowledge. Like phishing, pharming is used to acquire usernames, passwords, credit card numbers and other sensitive information.


  • Make sure your computer is up-to-date with the latest patches and updates to its operating system.
  • Avoid suspicious websites and ensure you are using secure web connections (look for https in the web address bar).
  • Do not click on links or open attachments from unfamiliar senders.
  • Change your passwords often and make them complex so they cannot be easily guessed.
  • Install an antivirus software and pay attention when it warns you against certain websites.
  • Monitor financial statements on a regular basis.

Raccoon Valley Bank  Online Banking is one of the most secure and convenient ways for you to manage your accounts. If you have any questions about security or other issues related to your accounts, please contact us at 515-465-3521.

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Contact or come by Raccoon Valley Bank today at any of our offices in Adel, Dallas Center, Grimes or Perry to experience a true community bank.

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