There are several steps you can take to protect yourself:
- Anti-virus software
Your personal information and money can be stolen through viruses. Ensuring you have up to date anti-virus software installed on your device helps to minimise the risk of it being corrupted.
- Sharing personal information
If you have social networking accounts, be sure to check the privacy settings to protect yourself.
You should never divulge your password to anybody, write it down or store it somewhere that can be easily accessed, such as your mobile phone. When setting a password, use a mix of upper and lower case letters, and include numbers and symbols.
- Emails and Text messages
When you receive an email, always check its authenticity – look at the sender address, ask yourself if you were expecting the email, and question if it doesn’t address you personally. If the email contains any links or attachments, don’t open them unless you know the sender, and you’re expecting to receive it. Emails from Hodge Bank will always be sent from an @hodge.co.uk email address. If you receive an email from an address different to this claiming to be from Hodge Bank, report it to us immediately via email@example.com or 0800 028 3746.
Make sure your spam filter is switched on, on your emails. If you find a suspicious email, mark it as spam and delete it. If you receive an email from Hodge Bank and aren’t sure it’s genuine, please contact us and we can confirm for you. Any suspicious emails or queries should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Never call numbers or follow links provided in suspicious emails, you should find the official website or customer support number using a separate browser and search engine. If you receive a phone call from Hodge Bank and aren’t sure it’s us, hang up and call us back on 0800 028 3746 where we can confirm this for you.
- Telephone calls
Fraudsters may call you pretending to be from Hodge Bank, the Police or other companies you may trust. This could be to convince you to pay money to another account or to confirm your security details, therefore allowing them access to your personal details which could be used as an act of fraud. If you receive a call from Hodge Bank and are uncertain if it’s genuine, do not provide or confirm any information, hang up immediately and call us back on 0800 028 3746.
When fraudsters use fake websites, and send fake emails to obtain personal information from you, this is known as phishing.
The email may look like it’s come from Hodge Bank, it could even link to a website that looks like it’s us. If you access or input any personal data from that site, such as a username and password, the fraudster can obtain your data.
Whilst these emails and websites may look genuine, there are ways to spot a phishing email:
- They don’t address you
The email may address you as ‘Sir’ or ‘Madam’ without including your name.
Often, a phishing email will use poor grammar, spelling and punctuation.
They will usually include an urgent message, asking you to take action quickly.
How Hodge Bank keeps your information safe
As a regulated business holding customer data and personal information, our systems are regularly checked to ensure that our customers and their data are kept safe. Protecting customer data is a priority for Hodge Bank.
- We will never email you asking for account information.
- If you phone us, we will require information to validate your identity. We will ask you for your full name, the address that your account is registered to, your date of birth and a security question such as your mother’s maiden name. We will never ask you for your online logon details, i.e. username and/or password.
If you think you are a victim of online fraud
We’re here to help. If you suspect any suspicious activity on your account, call us on 0800 028 3746 or email us at email@example.com. You can also report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or www.actionfraud.police.uk. They will give you a crime reference number.
Learning more about online security
Find out more about keeping yourself safe online by looking at the following websites:
- They don’t address you