Ensuring the safety of our customers is paramount to Huron Valley State Bank. We acknowledge that securing your identity and information is a collaboration between you, your bank, and other business entities with access to your personal data. Our strong commitment to safeguarding your information is underscored by our continuous awareness of emerging fraud techniques.

We want to emphasize that we never solicit your personal information through text messages, emails, phone calls, or the Internet. This information is only requested when you initiate contact with us, aiming to verify your identity and enhance the security of your accounts.

For any security-related questions or concerns about your accounts please contact us immediately.

If you believe your card has been lost or stolen, we provide detailed instructions for what you need to do to report it.

If You Become a Victim

If you are a victim of identity theft, the Federal Trade Commission provides helpful instructions on how to report identity theft and get a recovery plan started.

Visit the FTC for More Information

Protect Yourself Online

  • Never reply to emails that seem to be from us but request personal information such as account numbers, social security numbers, or online banking credentials. We will never solicit information from you in this manner. If you receive an email that appears to be from us and requests personal information, please contact us immediately.
  • Avoid opening suspicious emails. Fraudulent emails posing as entities like the IRS, FBI, FDIC, Amazon, PayPal, UPS, FedEx, Western Union, and other organizations or government entities are increasingly common. Clicking on links or opening attachments in these emails may introduce viruses that can log your online activity or allow remote access to your computer.
  • Ensure your computer has a comprehensive antivirus program that scans actively. Verify that the antivirus program updates automatically, as outdated programs may not safeguard against new threats. 
  • Ensure your computer is equipped with an anti-malware program that updates automatically to protect against newer malware threats.
  • Keep your web browser and operating system updated.
  • Exercise extreme caution when accessing your internet banking account at Wi-Fi hotspots (e.g., hotels, coffee shops, restaurants) as these networks are often unprotected and pose a high security risk.

Caution with email

Scammers often employ deceptive tactics to trick people into revealing sensitive information or creatively finding ways that could harm them financially. Most times this involves fraudulent requests for personal information such as social security and account numbers, payment details, or login credentials.

Be on the lookout for:

  • Unprofessional looking emails (typos, strange colors, or graphics)
  • Urgent or threatening language demanding payment now 
  • Suspicious links or attachments - Always think before you click
  • Inconsistent email disclaimer - company name doesn’t match the email disclaimer 
  • Fake or spoof URLs – example 
    • HUSB.com (changing U for V for HVSB.com)
    • Paypal.com.secure-site.com (in this case, the domain name is actually “secure-site.com” not “paypal.com”)
    • WaImart.com (using a capital “i” instead of a lower case “l”)

What to do if you suspect your identify has been compromised or you’re a victim of a scam:

Protect Your Phone

Your cell phone provides access to essential accounts like email, banking, and social media. However, this same accessibility poses potential risks from criminals. To protect your identity and hard earned money it is recommended to do the following:

  • Utilize the passcode lock feature on your smartphone and other devices to enhance security in case of loss or theft.
  • Always log out completely after finishing a mobile banking session. Your account will do this after inactivity but it is always good practice to do this on your own. 
  • Install mobile security software to protect your phone from viruses, malware, and other malicious software, similar to safeguarding your computer.
  • Exercise caution when downloading apps, avoiding those that request unnecessary permissions and being wary of potential malware.
  • Keep your phone and mobile apps updated by downloading the latest updates.
  • Refrain from storing sensitive information, such as passwords or social security numbers, on your mobile device.
  • Contact us if you change your phone number or lose your mobile device.
  • Before donating, selling, or trading your mobile device, wipe all data. Some software even allows remote wiping in case of loss or theft.
  • Avoid opening links and attachments from unfamiliar senders and be cautious of ads falsely claiming your device is infected.
  • Exercise extreme caution when accessing your internet banking account at Wi-Fi hotspots (e.g., hotels, coffee shops, restaurants) as these networks are often unprotected and pose a high security risk.

If you suspect your phone has been compromised, please contact us and we’ll be happy to provide additional assistance. 

Check Fraud

Check fraud is one of the oldest forms of fraud and it continues to be on the rise.

Checks are frequently stolen from mailboxes and other sources with the intent of fraud. Criminals use account information to create fake checks. The thieves then rewrite the details, typically altering the payee and increasing the amounts. Notably, the signature of the account owner often remains unchanged, making the forgery more challenging to detect.

To safeguard your checks from this threat, it is advisable not to leave bills in your mailbox for pickup. Instead, personally deposit them in a mailbox located inside the Post Office. As a better alternative, electronic bill payment is a viable option to avoid the risk altogether.

To Protect Yourself 

  • Shred old checks
  • Secure your checks 
  • Use trusted mailboxes 
  • Monitor your accounts daily
  • For businesses: Get extra layers of security with ACH and Check Positive Pay
  • Be cautious with personal information 
  • Avoid overpaying and refund scams 
  • Verify checks for accuracy and double check the payee 

What to do if you think you’re a victim of check fraud:

Contact us immediately

ATM Safety

Ensuring ATM safety is crucial for protecting both your personal and financial well-being. Here are some safety tips:

  • Keep your PIN confidential
  • Choose safe locations!
  • Be aware of your surroundings
  • Bring a companion
  • Have your card in hand ready to go
  • Shield your PIN entry - Use your hand/body to shield the ATM keyboard when entering your PIN. This helps prevent others from seeing or capturing your PIN.
  • Always take your receipts or opt for no-receipt 
  • Use your HVSB ATMs
  • Report lost or stolen cards immediately 
  • Be cautious of skimming devices - Check for any unusual attachments or devices on the ATM that may indicate skimming attempts. If something looks suspicious, use a different ATM and report it to the bank.

Top Scams Today

Scams are constantly evolving, and new ones may emerge over time. Here is a list of common ones today:

What is Mobile Banking?

  • Grandparents Scam 
    • Scammers contact seniors pretending to be their grandchild in distress and requesting money for an emergency such as an accident or arrest.
  • Romance Scams
    • Scammers create fake online personas and develop deep emotional connections with victims, eventually asking for money under various pretexts.
  • Social Security and Medicare scams 
    • Phishing (emails), phone calls (vishing) and door-to-door scammers claim there is a problem with a victim’s Social Security or Medicare account or fines they need to pay. They demand payments through wire transfers, sending cash, gift cards, and pre-paid debit cards or Bitcoin.
  • Telemarketing Scams 
    • Scammers make unsolicited calls offering fake products, services or charitable donations. Seniors are pressured to give out their credit card information.
  • Investment Scams
    • Fraudsters make fake investment proposals offering high returns.
  • Tech Support Scams
    • Scammers pose as technical support reps. and claim that the victim's computer has issues by way of phone call or pop-up message. They request remote access, and persuade them to pay for unnecessary services, software, regaining their data back or claims there is inappropriate content on the computer.

Scams Targeting Teens

  • Venmo and Cash App
    • Scammers pose as buyers and sellers and initiate transactions for goods, services, concerts, events that do not exist.
    • Phishing by text, email or social media pretending to be Venmo/Cash App with attempts to get your login credentials.
    • Scammers send more money than required for a transaction and ask for a refund. Usually this is linked to a stolen debit or credit card. The refund results in loss of money and the item never comes.
    • Posing as a charity in hopes of getting illegitimate donations
    • QR codes prompting unauthorized transactions 
    • Fake profiles resembling family and friends and requesting money

       To Protect yourself

  • Only transact with people you know!
  • NEVER give out your login credentials 
  • Double check transactions and avoid refunding excess money unless you’re sure it is legitimate.
  • Be cautious of QR codes and charity requests
  • Sextortion
    • Online exploitation which a person is manipulated into exchanging explicit images, videos or engage in sexual acts through the use of blackmail or threats. 
    • The perpetrator makes contact with the teen through social and builds trust over time.
    • Perpetrator convinces the victim to share explicit photos or videos in means that seems completely harmless. 
    • Upon receipt of the content (photos/videos) they threaten to blackmail the victim demanding money or to send more content. The blackmail usually consists of sharing these photos or videos with everyone on their social media channels. 

       To protect yourself:

  • Be cautious talking to people you do not know online
  • Use privacy settings to control who can see your personal information 
  • In the event you’re a victim of sextortion
    • Immediately discontinue communication with the perpetrator 
    • Let a trusted adult know immediately
    • Contact the FBI 1-800-CALL-FBI
  • Scammers pose as technical support representatives and claim that the victim's computer has issues and persuade them to grant remote access or pay for unnecessary services or software. 

Other Types of Scams

  • Investment Scams
    • Beware of investment opportunities, especially involving cryptocurrency. 
  • IRS/Debt Collection Scams
    •  Scammers impersonate IRS agents or debt collectors, threatening legal action if immediate payment is not made.
  • Job Offers
    • Be cautious of job offers that promise fast and easy money for little to no effort, especially if they involve using your bank account to process transactions. At times scammers will ask you send them money in advance for supplies or equipment claiming it will be refunded to you with your first paycheck. 
  • Money Mule Scams - Money muleing involves criminals recruiting unsuspecting individuals to transfer illegally obtained funds through their own bank accounts or other means. These funds may be proceeds from various illegal activities, such as phishing scams, online fraud, or human trafficking. Be on the lookout for:
  • Unexpected Money and Winnings 
  • Be cautious if told you won a prize or a lottery that you didn’t enter
  • Unsolicited Job Offers - at times scammers will ask you send them money in advance for supplies or equipment claiming it will be refunded to you with your first paycheck. 
  • Untraceable Funds - Request you to receive funds from unknown sources and then transfer them to another account 
  • High-Pressure Requests
  • International Transactions: (Money transfers)
  • Overpayment and refund scams 
    • Be cautious if you a write a check for an amount higher than the agreed-upon price for an item or service and later asked to refund the excess amount using a different payment method, such as a wire transfer, or debit card transaction. In the event you refund the excess amount to the scammer before the original payment clears, you may lose the additional funds, and the original payment may turn out to be fake or stolen. This could leave you at a loss for the entire overpaid amount.
  • Package Delivery Scams
    •  Scammers send fake delivery notifications, claiming the recipient missed a package and requesting personal information or payment to reschedule delivery.
  • Phishing Scams
    • Scammers send fraudulent emails or messages, pretending to be reputable organizations like Huron Valley State Bank, Amazon, or Netflix. Their goal is to trick people by clicking on links or providing account logins, passwords and credit card numbers.
  • Receipt Fraud
    • Thieves could use receipt-related scams as a social engineering tactics. They may send phishing emails that appear to be legitimate receipts or order confirmations. These emails might contain links or attachments that, when clicked, lead to malicious websites or download malware onto the victim's device. They can also be fake refund emails claiming that there was an issue with a recent purchase. The email may include a link to a fake refund process or a customer support portal where the victim is prompted to enter sensitive information.
  • Rental Scams
    •  Scammers advertise fake rental properties, taking deposits or payments from prospective tenants before disappearing, leaving the victims with no place to stay.
  • Romance Scams
    •  Scammers create fake online personas and develop emotional connections with victims, eventually asking for money under various pretexts.
  • Social Security and Medicare scams 
    • Email (phishing), phone calls (vishing) and door-to-door scammers claims with problems with a victim’s Social Security account or fines they need to pay 
    • They demand payments through wire transfers, sending cash, gift cards, pre-paid debit cards and other quick payments.
  • Tech Support Scams
    • Scammers pose as technical support representatives and claim that the victim's computer has issues and persuade them to grant remote access or pay for unnecessary services or software. 
  • Travel Scams
    •  Beware of great deals on vacation destinations including plane tickets, hotel stays, and car rentals. Scammers want your personal information and payment data for vacation plans that don’t exist, but the scam is for real.
  • Unexpected Money and Winnings
    •  Be wary when you have been told you have won a prize or a lottery that you didn’t enter. Scammers use this tactic to lure victims into their schemes.
  • Utilities Scam
    • Scammers impersonate DTE or another utility company insisting that services will be shut off if immediate payment is not made.

Caution When Buying and Selling Online

It is important to be vigilant on Facebook Marketplace, community bulletin boards, and any online sources when buying and selling online as this is breeding grounds for fraud and scams.

To protect yourself (for buyers)

  • Research the seller
    • Mutual connections with the buyer
    • Only other platforms 
    • Look for reviews and ratings from other buyers 
  • Verify the item's condition
    • Ask for detailed information about the item's condition and request additional pictures 
  • Use secure payment methods
    • Always use secure and traceable payment methods 
      • Credit cards or payment platforms with buyer protection
      • Never send a wire or cash directly
  • Be cautious with personal information 
    • Never give out your account number, social security number, or a phone code if you have provided your cell phone number.

To protect yourself (for sellers)

  • Create a Clear and Concise Listing 
    • Lots of details and pictures
  • Set a Fair Price 
    • Research similar items to determine a reasonable and competitive price for your item.
  • Choose a Safe Meeting Location 
    • Public and well-lit location such as a police station or library
  • Bring a Friend or Family Member
  • Accept cash as the payment method whenever possible
    • Avoid accepting checks, money orders, wires, or online payments. 
    • Be cautious of buyers asking to send you payment through Zelle®, Venmo, Cash App, etc. as in many cases they want to send you a link that accesses your bank account.
    • Inspect the cash by checking for counterfeit bills using security features like watermarks, security threads, and color-shifting ink.
    • Don't share personal information (Address) until you're ready to meet the buyer for the exchange.
  • Trust Your Instincts 
  • Be cautious of scams, such as overpayment or requests to send the item to a different location. Real buyers will not ask you to return money or ask you to ship to a different address. 

What to Do if You Suspect a Scam

Report it to the online source immediately (be sure to take screenshots) and to your local police department.