email phishing hacker Phishing is the term for one of the newest forms of identity theft. Fraudulent parties will send out an email, appearing to be from a legitimate financial institution or company, requesting personal information.

Key ways to spot a phishing email include:

Sender's Email Address. To give the recipient a false sense of security, the “From” line may include an official-looking email address that may actually be copied from a genuine one. The email address can easily be altered – it’s not an indication of the validity of any email communication.

Generic Email Greeting. A typical phishing email will have a generic greeting, such as “Dear Customer.”

False Sense of Urgency. Most phishing emails try to deceive recipients with the threat that their accounts will be in jeopardy if not updated right away. An email that urgently requests sensitive personal information is typically fraudulent.

Fake Links. Most phishing emails have a link that looks valid, but actually links to a fraudulent site that may or may not have an URL different from the link. Members should never click on a link within a suspicious email and always go directly to www.advancial.org to access their Advancial accounts.

How does Advancial protect against online identity theft?
Members can feel confident that Advancial employees will never initiate email correspondence asking for a Social Security number, PIN number, credit card number or check/ATM card number. Members should be suspicious of any emails that request this information and contact Advancial immediately.

Also, every page on Advancial’s Web site is secure and should have the lock symbol at the bottom of the browser window. If a member visits a site that appears to be Advancial’s and doesn’t include the lock symbol, he or she should contact Advancial immediately.

Where can I learn more about phishing?
You can learn more about phishing at www.ftc.gov.

What do I do if I receive a fraudulent email from Advancial?
If you are suspicious of an email that you have received with Advancial’s name or logo included, forward the email to fraudalert@advancial.org in its original form. Do not respond to the email or click on any links. If you have submitted any personal information, contact Advancial immediately.