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Phishing/Pharming Schemes

"Phishing" - What is it?

Phishing is a form of criminal activity where individuals pose as legitimate entities to try to obtain or "fish" for personal information.

How does it work?

Individuals masquerade as legitimate companies and send what looks to be an official email, instant message, or fax requesting you "update" or "verify" credit card numbers, bank account information, Social Security numbers, passwords, and any other sensitive information. Most recent attempts are targeting account holders. They will try to establish what financial institution you are affiliated with and send an official looking email from your bank to get account information.

"Pharming" - What is it?

Pharming is a criminal activity where a website's information is acquired and traffic on that website is directed to another location in order to obtain personal information.

How does it work?

If an individual wants to obtain information illegally they will set up a fraudulent website that looks like the real web site in almost every aspect. They will then use "phishing" tactics to entice people to the website to divulge personal information such as pin numbers, account numbers and passwords.

Please Note: Southside Bank will NEVER send an unsolicited email requesting you to verify your personal information.

How can I protect myself?