Great Western Bank hopes to help you more easily identify potential fraud attempts.

How to spot online fraud and stay safe

Lately, we have seen several instances of bank websites being copied by criminals with a similar address in an effort to trick customers. Read below on how to spot phony websites and what to do if you come across one.

How do I know the difference between real and counterfeit websites? 

Online fraud occurs when someone illegitimately obtains your sensitive personal information (such as your name, Social Security number, account numbers, or online banking login and password) and conducts unauthorized transactions on your bank, loan, or credit card accounts. Digital thieves often direct you to fraudulent websites via email and pop-up windows. These websites may try to collect your personal information or infect your computer with a virus. 
 
Often called “phishing” or “spoofing,” the most current methods of online fraud are fake texts, emails, websites and pop-up windows. Fake text messages will usually be from a phone number or web address that is not associated with Great Western Bank.  But in many cases, there is no easy way to determine that you are on a phony website because the URL will contain the name of the institution it is spoofing. 
 
However, if you type, or cut and paste, the URL into a new web browser window and it does not take you to a legitimate website, or you get an error message, it was probably just a cover for a fake website. 
 
You may also be able to detect a phony website by considering how you arrived there. Generally, these sites are accessed by a link in a fake email ("phish") requesting your account information.
 
Remember, Great Western Bank will never request personal information from you text via email. Any unsolicited request should be considered fraudulent and reported immediately.

How do I report fake e-mails, websites or pop-up windows? 

If you encounter a fake website, or pop-up window, or if you responded to one of these with personal information, call us immediately at 1-800-952-2043.
 
For more on how to stay safe from online fraud, visit our Fraud Prevention page on our website. 
 

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