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Identify Phishing Scams

How do you tell a real web site from a phishing web site? One method is to look for an icon of a closed lock at the bottom of the web page. This will usually appear in the lower right had corner. Generally if there is a closed lock icon on the bottom of the page the information you send is encrypted by the web server and the site is real. An open lock is a non-secure site and is probably a scam. Another way is to look at the address in the address bar. If the address is https it is a secure site. If it is http without the s it is not secure and probably a phishing site.

A third way to determine if the site is genuine is to ask yourself if you went to the site or did the site come to you? However this method is not as reliable as it used to be. You may note that sites claiming you may be the victim of identity theft request that you verify certain personal information including your account numbers so the “bank” can block access to your accounts or repair the damage done by an identity thief. Real financial institutions do not need this information. They know your account numbers.