At Bank of 1889, Security is a Priority.

Tips For Keeping Your Computer and Online Banking Secure

If you are using a public computer, always select "This is a public Computer. Do not register it" after entering your access id.

  • Log out after you are done with online banking.
  • Use complex passwords including letters, numbers, and symbols. This makes your password much more secure for use online.
  • Keep your computer operating system and browser up to date with the latest software and security downloads.
  • Don't open attachments, links or install free software from sources that you are not familiar with. This could expose your computer and the information on your computer to unauthorized sources.
  • Beware of emails asking you to click on links or requesting personal information.

While neural-network monitoring like FICO® Falcon® Fraud Manager certainly helps minimize risk, it's always wise for you to be proactive in protecting yourself from debit card fraud.

How to Minimize Your Risk

  1. Contact your financial institution: This is as much for cardholder convenience as safety. If your institution is unaware you're traveling to Rome, for example, they may freeze your account when a purchase is made there. Share as much detail as possible — dates, cities, how much you might spend, and how you can be reached.
  2. Clean out your wallet: Carrying a lot of credit and debit cards on vacation only increases the likelihood that one of them will become lost or stolen. Take only what you need, and make sure your limits are high enough to cover all expenses.
  3. Make a stop at the copy machine: Copy or scan the front and back of each card you plan to take. Be sure your account number and toll-free customer service number are legible (if you're traveling internationally, make sure you have appropriate phone numbers). Store the information somewhere other than where your card is, such as a hotel safe.
  4. Keep an eye on your cards: Food servers and store clerks can steal card information easily with a skimming device, so don't let your cards out of sight. If that's not possible, consider paying with cash. And remember, it's perfectly OK to let your instincts guide you. If something seems fishy, go somewhere else.
  5. Monitor your account frequently: Checking your account balance is a great way to combat fraud. With the SHAZAM® BOLT$™ mobile app, you can receive alerts to potential fraud on your smartphone or tablet and check your debit account balances as often as you'd like.

    Learn More about SHAZAM® BOLT$™

Identity Theft and You

We want to make sure our customers are aware of the dangers of identity theft. Identity theft occurs when criminals find a way to steal your personal or other identifying information to access your accounts, open new accounts, apply for credit in your name, make purchases, and commit other fraud related crimes.

The best defense against identity theft is knowledge. The following tips and information will help you prevent identity theft:

How You Can Help Prevent Identity Theft

Credit/ATM Cards and Accounts

  • Sign debit and credit cards immediately after they arrive, or even better, write, "ask for ID" in the signature strip
  • Track credit, debit and ATM receipts and never throw them in a public trash bin.
  • Shred all of your receipts and bank and credit card statements before disposing of them.
  • Keep an eye on your debit or credit card until the merchant completes your transaction, and make sure you get your card back.
  • Pick up checks in person, this makes it harder for your checks to be stolen, altered, and cashed by identity thieves
  • Do not keep passwords or ATM PINs in your wallet, purse, desk or organizer.
  • Monitor your transactions for unauthorized use. Online Banking makes it easy to review your transactions online daily.
  • Report any lost or stolen cards immediately.
  • Regularly review your credit report from all major credit bureaus to make sure that new credit card or other accounts have not been opened in your name. Credit bureau contact information is listed below.
  • Watch anyone who asks to "swipe" your credit or debit card. Devices known as "skimmers" are sometimes used by counterpersons to copy the identifying information off a magnetic strip of a credit or debit card and later added to a fake card with a blank magnetic strip.
  • You can opt-out of pre-approved credit offers by calling (888) 5-OPT-OUT.

Your Social Security Number

  • Do not have your driver's license or Social Security number printed on your checks.
  • Keep your Social Security Card in a safe place instead of carrying it with you in your wallet.

Your Computer

  • Install and use a firewall on your personal computers, especially those connected to the Internet. A firewall helps prevent hackers from accessing your computer.
  • Install virus protection software and anti-malware software on your computer and make sure it is updated frequently.
    Use the automated update wizards in your Operating System to download and install the latest security patches.
  • Make sure personal and financial information stored on your personal computers are protected with a password.
    Avoid using automatic login features that save your user name and password; and always log off when you're finished.
  • Choose unique passwords to access your accounts online. Don't use any part of your Social Security number, birth date, middle name, names of spouses, children or pets, consecutive numbers or anything else that a thief could easily discover. Choose passwords that are difficult for others to guess and use a different password for each of your online accounts. Use letters, numbers, and special characters. Do not share your IDs or passwords with anyone.
  • Do not send sensitive personal or financial information unless it is encrypted on a secure Web site. Encryption scrambles the information being sent over the Internet so others cannot intercept and capture your information. Look for the padlock or key icon on your browser, and make sure the Internet address begins with "https." This signals that your information is secure during transmission.


  • Watch out for "phishing" or "spoofing" e-mails that may appear to be legitimate messages. The sender attempts to get you to reveal confidential personal information that can be used for identity theft. The BANK OF 1889 will not contact you via email to ask for or to validate any of your personal information.
  • Be alert for email hoaxes and suspicious phone inquiries. These may appear to come from a trusted business or friend, but actually are designed to trick you into providing sensitive information, downloading a virus or jumping to a fraudulent Web site.
  • NEVER fill in any information in an email that contains input fields.
  • NEVER open any email attachments, web links or files if the source is NOT trustworthy, or CANNOT be confirmed.

U.S. Mail:

  • Promptly remove mail from your mailbox.
  • Deposit outgoing mail in post office collection boxes or at your local post office rather than in an unsecured mailbox. Use our free Online Banking with Bill Pay to send your payments. Making payments online can help prevent mail fraud while saving you time and postage. If you're planning to be away from home and can't pick up your mail, call the U.S. Postal Service at (800) 275-8777 to request a vacation hold.
  • Pay attention to your billing and account statement cycles. If regular bills or statements stop reaching you, take action. Call the company's customer service number. Someone may have filed a false change-of-address notice to divert your mail.
  • Shred all credit card solicitations you are not interested in.


  • Invest in a document shredder and shred unnecessary financial documents, including old bank statements, invoices, charge receipts, checks, unwanted pre-approved credit offers, and expired charge cards before disposing of them.
  • Consider subscribing to an Identity Protection Service (such as LifeLock) that will help safeguard your private information, and notify you of potential Identity Theft occurences.
  • Shred or secure in a lockbox all documents with important identifying information on them. This includes bank statements, credit card statements, paystubs, insurance claim or payment forms, other financial documents and credit reports. Most identity thieves find the information they need to perpetrate crimes by going through people's trash.
  • Don't provide personal or financial information to anyone unless you initiated the contact. When you call us, come to a branch or visit us online, we may ask for some information to verify your identity. But we want to assure you that BANK OF 1889 does not call you or send you an email asking you to send us a response containing personal or private information.
  • Keep important documents at home. Don't carry extra credit cards, Social Security card, birth certificate or passport with you outside your house.
  • Never disclose your PIN or password to anyone and always safeguard it.
  • Ensure that your employer, landlord and anyone else with access to your personal data keeps your records safe.
  • Order your free credit report. You are entitled to a free credit report from each of the three credit bureaus every year. Make sure you review your reports for inaccuracies such as mistakes, unrecognized new lines of credit, delinquent accounts, new names indicating identity theft.

What To Do if You Are a Victim of Identity Theft

  • Notify us at (800) 423-6601, along with any other financial service providers.
  • File a report of identity theft with your local police.
  • Contact one of the major credit bureaus to report the incident and ask to have a fraud alert placed on your file. Once the credit bureau confirms your fraud alert, the other credit bureaus will be automatically notified to place fraud alerts, and all credit reports will be sent to you free of charge. Review your credit reports and notify the bureaus about anything that looks suspicious.

Credit Bureaus

  • To order a report, call: (800) 888-4213
  • To report fraud, call: (800) 680-7289
  • TDD (877) 553-7803; fax: (714) 447-6034; or write:
    Fraud Victim Assistance Department,
    P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton, CA 92634-6790