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Security Tips

Keeping your personal, private information secure.

Be cautious when sharing your personal information.
  • Peoples Bank will never ask for your social security number, user ID, account number, or password via email or by phone when we call you.
  • Never provide your social security number, user ID, account number, or password via email or by phone to businesses or persons you do not know.  
  • Never provide your account number or authorize someone else to “use” your account to negotiate checks, make deposits, or receive or send wire transfers.  You are the person legally responsible for all transactions completed on your account.   
Keep your contact information up-to-date.  Correct email addresses, cell phone numbers, and mailing addresses ensure we are able to contact you.  The Bank must have a current email address and phone number for notification and alert features.  We need to be able to contact you and ensure you are receiving the alerts as you have requested.

Be cautious of suspicious emails. Be skeptical of unsolicited emails. Do not respond to emails that may warn of dire consequences if you do not enter your username and password or provide personal, private information for verification.  Legitimate companies will never send you a request to provide your social security number, username, password, or account information. Only provide your username and password on websites you have an established account.

Confirm identity of requestor when asked for personal, private information. If you did not solicit or are suspicious about an email, verify the email is legitimate by contacting the company using a publicly published telephone number or web address you know to be genuine.  Even if it is a company you do business with, if you did not expect the request or if the request isn’t logical, you should verify the company sent it before responding. Never call back a number provided on the solicitation itself.

Secure your mailbox. Keep an eye out for missing mail. An insecure mailbox with the flag raised makes you a target for mail theft.  Access to both your incoming and outgoing mail provides fraudsters the opportunity to compromise checks and information to perpetrate fraud and ID theft.  

Use online statements.  Protect your account information by signing up for online statements.  Electronic delivery of statements eliminates the risk of mail theft. Online statements may be reviewed, printed, or downloaded through your secure Peoples Online Banking account.

Use Bill Pay instead of writing checks. When you pay a bill using online Bill Pay, no account information is sent with your bill.  Only the information you provide, such as your name and your billing reference or invoice number, is sent with the payment.  Using Bill Pay also eliminates the risk of checks being stolen from your mailbox.

Use Apple Pay.  Apple Pay is a mobile wallet that allows you to easily make purchases at participating merchants with virtual cards on your iPhone and Apple Watch™. It uses your fingerprint and tokenization for authorization security. Tokenization replaces your debit card number with a code, so your debit and credit card information is not provided as data to the merchant. 

Set email alerts. Email account alerts can be established to notify you of bill payment and other online activity as well as when your balance drops below a level you choose.

Create a Strong Password

Use complex passwords to thwart password compromises through hacking. The word “Password” in any form, 12345, May2015 (MonthYear), Welcome, and Iloveyou are all passwords which are easily compromised because they are used, over and over.  

If common passwords don’t work, hackers may try a “dictionary attack” where a computer program simply runs through the words in the dictionary.  If they are still unsuccessful, they are forced to do a “brute force attack” where the program must try all combinations of letters, letter cases, numbers, and symbols.  Pushed to a “brute force attack” methodology, hackers will give up and simply move on to an easier target.  

Tips for creating a strong, unique password

  • Use a passphrase.  Choose a sentence, quote, or song lyric and use the first letter of each word.  Change letters to numbers and symbols, or insert a random character.
  • In general, the longer the password, the more secure. Use at least 8 characters; 12 is even better.
  • Use a combination of numbers, symbols, upper case letters, and lower case letters to make your passwords strong.  
  • Change your passwords from time to time and when you do, make sure they are different, not just the number at the end.  
  • Use different passwords for non-financial sites and your financial accounts.  
  • Never use your username as a password.  Never use a blank password or the word “password” in any form.  Avoid common passwords, such May2015 (MonthYear).
  • Do not use part or all of account numbers, your social security number, personal dates, or other account or personal information.
  • Don’t use keyboard combinations or patterns, such as ‘13579‘, ‘zxcv’, ‘qwerty’, or ‘mmmmm’.
  • Don’t use personal information that might be known to others.  Versions of your name, birth dates, family members’ names, your pets, last 4 digits of your social security number, license-plate numbers, and phone numbers.  Think about what is known or shared through social media or public records and don’t use it.