Consumer Security & Alerts
Equifax, Inc. Cybersecurity Breach
On September 7, 2017, Equifax Inc. announced a cybersecurity incident potentially impacting approximately 143 million U.S. consumers. Criminals exploited a U.S. website application vulnerability to gain access to certain files from mid-May through July 2017. The information accessed primarily includes names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers. In addition, credit card numbers for approximately 209,000 U.S. consumers, and certain dispute documents with personal identifying information for approximately 182,000 U.S. consumers, were accessed.
Same as most financial institutions, Athens Federal reports information to Equifax as one of the major credit reporting agencies. Customers may visit www.equifaxsecurity2017.com for additional information, to quickly check whether they may have been individually affected, and to enroll for free fraud monitoring made available by Equifax.
You may also visit the AFCB Identity Theft Protection Resource page for indicators, precautions, and steps to report potential identify theft fraud.
"Test Transactions" on Counterfeit Cards - Don't Fall Victim
Due to a growing fraud trend of "test transactions" on counterfeit cards, we encourage all customers to pay particular attention to their debit card alerts/notifications (text, email and phone), online account history and statements for potential fraudulent activity.
"Test transactions" often occur for $1 or less online or at out-of-state fuel pumps.
We have noticed an increase in our customers responding "no fraud" to alerts when fraud was present on the account. Please keep in mind that if you respond "no fraud" to a bank-issued alert that included a fraudulent transaction, you may be liable for any subsequent fraudulent transactions on your card.
Learn to Identify Fraudulent Emails, Phone Calls and Text Messages
"Phishing" is a type of debit and credit card fraud. By pretending to contact you from a bank or similar financial institution, scammers "fish" for account numbers, passwords, Social Security numbers, debit card information, PIN numbers, etc. They trick consumers into divulging sensitive information so that unlawful charges can be made on the consumer's account.
Our cardholders have notified us of and forwarded a number of such messages that claim to be from Athens Federal. These schemes change frequently and often have call back numbers or, if in email, links or attachments with links. Users who return calls or text messages, or click on links within emails, are then asked to enter personal financial information.
Please note that we will NEVER ask you for your passwords or debit card PIN number, and will never include your full account number in a text or email message - only the last 4 digits. If you receive a text, phone call (voicemail) or email claiming to be from us that includes your full account number or asks you to submit your PIN number and/or password(s), please DO NOT respond to it - simply ignore and delete.
If you think you have responded to a "phishing" scam and provided personal financial information, please contact our 24-hour fraud monitoring service at 1-866-546-8273. During business hours, you may also contact your customer service representative at 1-800-526-3572.
Text Message Scam Alert (October 2016)
We have received several reports that our customers received unauthorized requests for account information by entities claiming to represent Athens Federal and other local banks and credit unions. THIS IS A SCAM. Please do not reply to any messages or calls requesting you to enter your account or debit card number or PIN. The texts are generated randomly and are in no way associated with Athens Federal.
Remember, we do not know your PIN number and will NEVER request it - this should always be a red flag for fraud.
If you receive the text, please delete it immediately and do not call the number listed. If you responded to the text and provided your debit card number and/or PIN, please contact our 24-hour fraud hotline at 1-866-546-8273 and report the incident to disable your debit card.
Phishing Fraud Alert (September 2016)
We have several reports of a phishing scam in our service area in which customers are receiving telephone calls/text messages and being asked for debit card information and/or online banking credentials. Please remember to NEVER release your personal financial information via telephone for any reason. Even if someone claims to be making a loan to you and/or attempting to obtain loan payments, you should NEVER be required to provide access to your online banking account.
If you have any questions, please call our office 1-800-526-3572.
New Release from the FDIC - A Bank Customer's Guide to Cybersecurity (March 2016)
Click here to view the .pdf >
Sally Beauty Supply Debit Card Compromise (July 28, 2014 - April 25, 2015)
The retailer Sally Beauty Supply Company recently disclosed a potential beach of their payment processing systems that may have affected customers who made purchases in the store from July 28, 2014 – April 23, 2015. Early reports indicate that card information may have been intercepted and compromised. Athens Federal cardholders who used their debit card to make one or more purchases at Sally Beauty Supply during this time have been notified.
This was a security breach attributable to the merchant and/or its payment processor and any release of account information did not occur within the Athens Federal system. If you have questions, please contact us at 1-800-526-3572.
Beware of Recent Debit Card Fraud
We have a report of a debit card scam where customers are receiving telephone calls and being asked for their debit card information. These calls are not coming from Athens Federal Community Bank. We would NEVER call you and ask for your card information over the phone. If you receive a call, please do not give any personal information to anyone over the phone.
If you have any questions, please call our office 1-800-526-3572.
Beware of Foreclosure Rescue, Loan Modification and Forensic Loan Audit Solicitations
Click Here to Learn More
Mortgage fraud has become increasingly common across the country. You may receive unsolicited correspondence via mail, phone and/or internet in regard to foreclosure rescue, loan modification, and forensic loan audits. Often times this correspondence is sent to get you involved in a fraudulent scheme where you pay money up front for services and benefits you may never receive. The link above provides helpful and informative information from the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) on avoiding mortgage fraud and scams.
If you have received or receive any unsolicited correspondence regarding your mortgage loan account with Athens Federal and have questions, please feel free to contact any of our mortgage loan officers.
Mortgage Assistance: THDA Hardest Hit Fund
Attention Homeowners: The Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) was recently allocated $217,315,593 million dollars to make mortgage payments for eligible homeowners through the U.S. Treasury's Hardest Hit Fund. The program is designed to help unemployed and substantially underemployed homeowners who have lost income as a result of the economic downturn to meet their mortgage obligation. Amounts are up to $20,000 over an 18-month period for "targeted" counties (including McMinn and Monroe) and up to $15,000 over a 12-month period for all other Tennessee counties.