_0040_Fraud & ID Theft-121065121.jpg
_0040_Fraud & ID Theft Mobile-121065121.jpg

Fraud & ID Theft Prevention

How We Protect Your Online Security

The security of your financial information is one of Southern Bank's most important responsibilities. We maintain our Internet banking platform using stringent information security guidelines and use many lines of defense to protect your account information. From authentication, SSL, encryption software, high-end firewalls, and automatic log off, your information is always safe and secure.

How We Protect You

How we protect you through Online Banking: 

  • Authentication ensures that you, the legitimate user is communicating with us and not a fraudster who does not have authority to access your online accounts.

  • SSL stands for "Secure Socket Layer." This technology allows users to establish sessions with secure Internet sites, meaning they have minimal risk of external violation. Once inside the Internet Banking site, our use of SSL technology keeps you and your account information secure. Only browsers supporting the SSL security protocol with 128 bit encryption can be used to log on to our system.

  • Encryption turns words and phrases into coded language. All of your online activities during an Internet banking session become a string of unrecognizable numbers before entering the Internet. We employ the strongest forms of cryptography that are commercially available for use over the Internet, so your account information will read as gibberish to everyone but you and our financial institution.

  • High-end firewalls protect our computer systems interacting with the Internet against unauthorized access by outside individuals or networks.

  • Automatic log off is done automatically after 10 minutes of inactivity during an Internet banking session. So if you forget to log off after your online session, we will do this for you to prevent anyone else from accessing your account.

  • Account Masking Feature Protects Your Sensitive Data & Defends Against Online Fraud. Southern Bank's Account Masking reveals only the last few digits of your account number during Internet banking sessions. So your online account numbers are better protected against criminals wanting to use this sensitive information to access your accounts.

How we protect you through our Mobile Banking app:

  • Device Analytics is a security feature that controls access to mobile banking through the Mobile Application. Before each login to Mobile Banking through the app, Device Analytics performs a risk factor analysis on the user's mobile device. It looks at various aspects of the device's operating system and configuration for potential risk factors. 

  • A risk factor analysis score is generated before the user even begins to attempt login to Mobile Banking. If Device Analytics detects significant risk factors on the user's device, it can either require the user to answer security questions for additional authentication, or deny access if the risk is severe. 

  • Every time a customer opens a native Mobile Banking application, the device is automatically assessed in less than a second against the following risk factors:

    • Configuration Update, Operating System (OS) Up to Date, Rooted/Jailbroken, Root Evasion, Malware, Wi-Fi, Restrict, Suspicious System

  • The value of the Risk Score, which is not visible not he device to the end user, determines how to treat each attempted access to the Mobile Banking application to either: allow access, require answers to security questions before allowing access, or deny access.  

How we protect your Debit Card: 

  • EnFact fraud monitoring builds a profile of each card user and then monitors card activity 24/7 for potentially suspicious activity.

  • EnFact monitors your ATM and debit card transactions day and night to better protect you from fraud. The high-tech, high-touch monitoring solution protects your accounts using state-of-the-art intelligence technology and skilled fraud experts. 

  • You will receive an automated call from EnFact when a suspicious transaction occurs:

    • You will be asked to verify recent transaction activity on your card.
    • You will use your touchtone telephone keypad to respond to the inquiries.
    • You will be provided a toll-free number to call if you have questions.
    • You will NEVER be asked for your full card number or PIN, nor will you ever be asked for your bank account number. If you are ever asked these things, hang up and call the bank to inquire about your card activity.
  • Your response to this call is important to help stop actual fraud and to avoid restrictions that may be placed on your card. A sudden change in the location from which transactions usually occur, a high-cost purchase, a string of transactions from a merchant or ATM within a short time period, or a transaction that matches criteria of a known fraud trend may flag a transaction as suspicious.

  • Please inform us of a change of telephone number as soon as possible, so you can be contacted quickly when suspicious transactions occur.  Our top priority is ensuring that your card is safe and that you have the ease of using your card when and wherever you need it.

  • Traveling Outside the United States: Our EnFact Service monitors for fraudulent activity, and foreign transactions have the potential to be seen as fraudulent activities. To protect our customers from this threat, some countries have been blocked from Debit Card usage.  Please contact us prior to your travel to ensure you will never be left without funds.

    This service is automatically placed as an enhancement on all Southern Bank debit cards and requires no action on your part. If you have any questions, please call 1-855-452-7272 or stop by your nearest Southern Bank location. 

We take numerous steps to keep your account information secure. However, you must take precautions as well.

  • Choose a good passcode - Your online passcode, along with your access ID, authenticate your identity when accessing online accounts. You should carefully select a passcode that is difficult to guess and not use personal information or a word that can be found in the dictionary.
  • Keep your passcode safe - Even the best passcode is worthless if it's written on a note attached to your computer or kept in your checkbook. Memorize your passcode and never tell it to anyone.
  • Change your passcode regularly - It's important to change your passcode regularly. Every time you choose a new passcode, our online banking system runs a quick program to test its safety. If we can guess it, we will immediately ask you to choose another one.
  • Remember to log off properly - You may not always be at your own computer when banking online. Therefore, it's important to log off using the "log off" link at the top of each Internet banking page. If you forget to do so, the system automatically signs you off after 10 minutes of inactivity.

How To Protect Yourself from Online Fraud

The increased sophistication and rapid growth of online fraud continues to be a challenge. These scams appear in many forms, especially fraudulent emails and Web site, spyware and viruses, and pop-up advertisements.

Fraudulent Emails and Websites

This particular type of fraud occurs when someone poses as a legitimate company to obtain personal data, such as account numbers, and then makes transactions with this information illegally. A common form of this scam is called "phishing". Phishing refers to cyber-criminals who attempt to gather sensitive personal information from consumers through emails and/or through imitations of legitimate Web sites. To combat phishing, please remember that Southern Bank will never ask for sensitive information from you via e-mail (ex. Social security number, access ID, passcode or account number, or ATM/debit card number and PIN).

Spyware and Viruses

Spyware and viruses are destructive programs loaded on your computer without your permission or knowledge. Spyware appears as a legitimate application on your computer but actually monitors your activity and collects sensitive information. Viruses are harmful programs spread through the Internet that can compromise the security of your computer. Maintaining up-to-date anti-spyware and virus protection software and firewalls help avoid these risks.

Pop-Up Advertisements

Pop-ups appear in a separate browser window and, when clicked, can download harmful spyware or adware to your computer. While some make legitimate offers, many pop-ups are attempts to obtain your sensitive information. Southern Bank will never ask you to verify personal financial information in pop-up advertisement.

Helpful Tips to Protect You

While online banking is safe, as a general rule you should always be careful about giving out your personal financial information over the Internet. Review the following tips to protect your personal information while using the Internet.

  • Regularly log into your online accounts to verify that your bank, credit, and debit card statements and transactions are legitimate.
  • Be suspicious of any e-mail with urgent requests for personal financial information.
  • If you receive an unsolicited e-mail from any source asking you to click on a link to visit a site and input personal data, be very wary of it.
  • Be cautious about opening any attachments or downloading any files from e-mails, regardless of who sent them.
  • Instead of clicking on links in emails, type in the URL that you're familiar with, such as www.bankwithsouthern.com, or select the Web address saved in your browser's "Favorites".
  • If an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is and should be avoided.
  • If you have any doubts about the validity of an email, contact the sender using a telephone number you know to be genuine.
  • Before you initiate an online transaction, make sure your personal information is protected by looking for indicators that the site is secure. URLs for secure sites typically begin with "https" instead of "http" and display a lock in the lower right corner of your browser.
  • Use anti-virus software and keep it up-to-date.
  • Make sure you have applied the latest security patches for your computer. Most software providers, like Microsoft, offer free security patches.
  • If you have broad-band Internet access, such as cable modem or DSL, make sure that you have a firewall.
CardValet App

Control where, when and how your card is used, while safeguarding against fraud. By downloading the free CardValet app to your smartphone, you're always in control of card acvity. Turn cards off and on, set thresholds, monitor transactions, and much more — all from your phone. Best of all, it's customizable to your preferences. 

App Details 

  • Protect yourself against fraud in a customizable way
  • Free app, available from your smartphone’s app store
  • Turn cards off and on
  • Control locations
  • Set up merchant type controls
  • Set thresholds
  • Set alert preferences
  • Monitor transactions
  • Step 1 - Download CardValet App
  • Step 2 – Enter card information
    • Card number
    • Address*
    • Security code
    • Card expiration
  • · Step 3 – Verify acceptance
    • Accept Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
  • · Step 4 – Create your account
    • Create username and password
    • Enter email

*For security purposes, the address entered must match the address on file at Southern Bank exactly. 

CardValet Options

How To: Turn Cards Off

When your card is ON, transactions are allowed in accordance with your control settings. When the card is OFF, no purchases or withdrawals are approved. This control can be used to disable a lost or stolen card.

  • Select the On/Off toggle to turn card on or off
  • Confirm changes

  • Card status: Green=On; Red=Off 

How To: Control Locations

The My Location control can restrict transactions to merchants located within a certain range of each cardholder’s location (using your phone’s GPS); transactions requested outside of the specified range can be declined. Location options include:

  • None (Location policy is not enabled)

  • My Location (Matches cardholder’s phone location to merchant location, and denies if no match)
  • My Regions (User selects a regional area from a map) RECOMMENDED
  • International (Enables International policy)

Note: If ‘my locations’ is selected and the cardholder’s phone and the card are not in the same location, transactions will be declined. Location control does not impact card-not-present transactions. 

How To: Set Up Merchant Type Controls

CardValet allows you to set debit card limits for the types of merchants allowed – such as location and dollar amounts, which is a great tool for parents and employers.

  • Merchant Types ON enables all merchant types
  • Turn OFF individual merchant types to control transactions 

How To: Set Thresholds

With CardValet, you can set user thresholds to help control debit card spending.

  • Select Threshold Policy ON to enable threshold amounts
  • Cardholders can specify an amount above which transactions should NOT be authorized

Note: If thresholds is turned on, an amount must be entered or all transactions will be declined. 

How To: Set Alert Preferences

CardValet can send you real-time push notifications, such as alerts when your balance is low or when your card is used.

  • Select “Alert Preferences” to specify card alert settings
  • Alerts can be generated based on location, merchant types and thresholds 

How To: Monitor Transactions

You can also view recent account transactions via CardValet, to help monitor and control spending.

  • Under Card Details, select Recent Transactions
  • View pending, cancelled, denied and posted transactions




Additional Resources

The Federal Trade Commission web site has information for consumers and businesses on how to Deter, Detect, and Defend against identity theft. The website also includes details on how an active duty military person can place an "Active Duty Alert" on their credit report and how you to file an identity theft complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

You are allowed one free credit report every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. You may request this report via their website, phone or mail. See details on the Annual Credit Report website.

Find consumer advice on how to avoid phishing scams, what to do if you have given out your personal financial information, how to report phishing and also browse the phishing archives.

The Federal Bureau of Investigations website has many features which include the "Be Crime Smart" section on e-scams, warnings, reporting internet crime, common fraud schemes and other tips and suggestions.

Credit Reporting Agencies

Note: By notifying one agency of fraudulent activity, you will notify all three.

  • Equifax 
    Request a credit report: (800) 685-1111 Option 4 
    Reporting Fraud: (800) 525-6285 
    Website: http://www.equifax.com
  • Experion 
    Request a credit report: (888) 397-3742 
    Reporting Fraud: (888) 397-3742 
    Website: http://www.experian.com
  • TransUnion Corporation 
    Request a credit Report: (800) 916-8800 
    Reporting Fraud: (800) 680-7289 
    Website: http://www.transunion.com