January 30, 2019Cybersecurity Tips from the IRS

Cybercriminals are constantly evolving and the IRS is asking taxpayers to better protect personal and financial data online and at home by considering these important steps to protect yourself from identity thieves:

Keep Your Computer Secure

  • Use security software and make sure it updates automatically, including Firewall, virus/malware protection, and file encryption for sensitive data
  • Treat your personal information like cash, don’t leave it lying around
  • Check out companies to find out who you’re really dealing with
  • Give personal information only over encrypted websites – look for “https” addresses
  • Use strong passwords and protect them
  • Back up your files

Avoid Phishing and Malware

  • Avoid phishing emails, texts or calls that appear to be from the IRS and companies you know and trust, go directly to their websites instead
  • Don’t open attachments in emails unless you know who sent it and what it is
  • Download and install software only from websites you know and trust
  • Use a pop-up blocker
  • Talk to your family about safe computing

Protect Personal Information

Don’t routinely carry your or any dependents’ Social Security card or documents with SSN. Do not overshare personal information on social media. Information about past addresses, a new car, new home and your children can help identity thieves pose as you. Keep old tax returns and tax records under lock and key or encrypted if electronic. Shred tax documents before trashing.

Avoid IRS Impersonators. The IRS will not call you with threats of jail or lawsuits. The IRS will not send you an unsolicited email suggesting you have a refund or that you need to update your account. The IRS will not request any sensitive information online. These are all scams, and they are persistent. Don’t fall for them. Forward IRS-related scam emails to phishing@irs.gov. Report IRS-impersonation telephone calls at www.tigta.gov.

Additional steps:

  • Check your credit report annually; check your bank and credit card statements often;
  • Review your Social Security Administration records annually. Sign up for My Social Security at www.ssa.gov.
  • If you are an identity theft victim whose tax account is affected, review www.irs.gov/identitytheft for details.

Security

Not securing your own computer, or not updating it properly, can be a recipe for disaster.

We encourage you to implement several security tips when you use our Online Banking services:

  1. Always access your online banking account on the RSI.bank homepage. Never click on a link sent to you in an email.
  2. Never give out your personal information through an email or over the phone. RSI Bank will never request that information in this manner.
  3. Choose your User ID and password carefully – They should not be easy for others to guess (like your name or birthday, or your children's names and birthdays). Make sure to change your passwords on a regular basis.
  4. Use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols when creating a password.
  5. Never reveal your password to anyone; never leave your password in a place where someone else can obtain and use it.
  6. Make sure you have a firewall in place when conducting your financial transactions.
  7. Log out completely - Do not simply close your browser or use the back button to exit the site. Use the Exit button to end each Online Banking session and then close your browser.
  8. Never leave an open session unattended. Your online banking session should be your only open internet window or tab.
  9. Change your session timeout in User Options to a time that meets your needs.
  10. Install an antivirus app on both your personal computer and your mobile device and keep it updated.
  11. Always keep your computer and/or smartphone up to date.
  12. Never access your Online Banking account from a public or shared computer.
  13. Avoid installing Android apps from third-party websites or unreliable sources.
  14. Read the permissions requested by every application before installing.
  15. Perform regular backups of data stores on your smartphone.
  16. Protect devices with passwords.
  17. Don't view or share personal information over a public Wi-Fi network.
  18. Balance your account and statements on a regular basis. Online Banking makes it easy!
 

RSI Bank strongly encourages our commercial customers to perform their own risk assessments and controls evaluations.

  • Make a list of the risks related to online transactions that your business faces including: passwords being written down and left out in the open; the use of old or inadequate passwords; the possibility of internal fraud or theft; delays in terminating the rights of former employees; the lack of dual control or other checks and balances over individual access to online transaction capabilities.

  • An evaluation of controls your business uses may include: Using password protected software to house passwords in; conducting employee background checks; initiating a policy and process to terminate access to former employees; segregating duties among two or more people so no one person has too much access or control; conducting internal or third party audits of controls; using firewalls to protect from outside intrusion or hackers.