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Americana Community Bank Offers Tips to Small Businesses for Combating Fraud

10-26-2012 02:01 PM CET | Business, Economy, Finances, Banking & Insurance

Press release from: Americana Community Bank

Americana Community Bank Offers Tips to Small Businesses

SLEEPY EYE, MN – Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting small businesses to transfer funds from accounts and steal private information, a fraud referred to as “corporate account takeover.” Criminals use spoofed emails, malicious software and online social networks to obtain login credentials to businesses’ accounts, which they then use to make illicit transactions.

“Small businesses are a growing target for account takeover,” said Adam Dittrich, President/CEO. “Yet, a strong partnership with Americana Community Bank will give you the tools needed to shield yourself from this attack.”

Combating account takeover is a shared responsibility between businesses and financial institutions. Bankers can explain the safeguards small businesses need and the numerous programs available that help ensure fund transfers, payroll requests and withdrawals are legitimate and accurate. Employees should be trained about safe internet use and the warning signs of this fraud, as they are the first line of defense.

“We’re far more effective at combating account takeover when we combine resources than going at it alone,” said Dittrich.

To mark National Cyber Security Awareness Month, Americana Community Bank offers small businesses these tips to help prevent account takeover:

• Protect your online environment. It is important to protect your cyber environment just as you would your physical location. Do not use unprotected internet connections. Encrypt sensitive data and keep updated anti-virus and anti-spyware protection on your computers. Change passwords from the default to something complex, including at point-of-sale terminals.

• Partner with your bank for payment authentication. Talk to your banker about services that offer call backs, device authentication, multi-person approval processes, batch limits and other tools that help protect you from unauthorized transactions.

• Pay attention to suspicious activity and react quickly. Put your employees on alert. Look out for strange network activity, do not open suspicious emails and never share account information. If you suspect a problem, disconnect the compromised computer from your network and contact your banker. Keep records of what happened.

• Understand your responsibilities and liabilities. The account agreement with your financial institution will detail what commercially reasonable security measures are required in your business. It is critical that you understand and implement the security safeguards in the agreement. If you don’t, you could be liable for losses resulting from a takeover. Talk to your banker if you have any questions about your responsibilities.

To learn more, see the American Bankers Association’s Small Business Guide to Corporate Account Takeover (http://www.aba.com/solutions/fraud/pages/corporateaccounttakeoversmallbusiness.aspx).

Read about National Cyber Security Awareness Month at http://www.dhs.gov/national-cyber-security-awareness-month.

2012 Maple Grove Patch “Best Of” winner, Americana Community Bank (ACB) is a full-service community bank providing down-to-earth consumer and commercial financial services in Sleepy Eye, Chanhassen, Maple Grove and Minnetonka, Minn. Chartered in 1881 as The State Bank of Sleepy Eye, ACB has actively participated in and supported the communities it serves for more than 130 years. Adam Dittrich, ACB President/CEO, was named a Rising Star Banker by North-Western Financial Review in July 2012.

Americana Community Bank
600 Market Street, Suite 230
Chanhassen, MN 55317

Press Contact
Katherine Jaeger
952-230-9717
katherinej@americanafinancial.com

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