Phone: 815-628-3121
Fax: 815-628-3551


Helpful Hints

Protect Yourself

  • Install software that protects against malware, or malicious software, which can access your computer without your consent to steal passwords or account numbers.
  • Use a firewall to prevent unauthorized access to your PC.  
  • Make sure you are receiving necessary software updates.

Be Strong

  • Use the strongest authentication offered, especially for high-risk transactions.
  • Use passwords that are difficult to guess- and keep them secret.
  • Create “strong” usernames and passwords for your computers, mobile devices and online accounts by using combinations of upper and lower-case letters, numbers and symbols that are hard to guess- and change them frequently.  
  • Use a different password or PIN for each device or account.

Surf Safely

  • When surfing the internet, you can have greater confidence that a website is authentic and that it encrypts (scrambles) your information during transmission if the web address begins with https://.
  • Make sure to log out of financial accounts when you complete your transactions or walk away from the computer.
  • Review your web browser’s user instructions for additional safety tips.

Open Wisely

  • Be suspicious of unsolicited emails asking you to click on a link, download an attachment, or provide personal information.
  • Be aware- Cyber criminals can easily copy the logo from a reputable company or organization and insert it in a phishing email.

Connect Carefully

  • Be careful where and how you connect to the internet.
  • Only access the internet for banking or other activities that involve personal information using your own laptop or mobile device through a known, trusted and secure connection.  Public computers and free Wi-Fi networks are not necessarily secure.  
  • Cyber criminals can intercept internet traffic from public Wi-Fi locations with little effort.

Socialize Selectively

  • Cyber criminals use social networking sites to gather user’s personal details, such as their place or date of birth, a pet’s name, their mother’s maiden name, and other information that can help them figure out passwords- or how to reset them.
  • Don’t share your “page” or access to your information with anyone you don’t know and trust.  Cyber criminals may pretend to be your “friend” to convince you to send money or divulge personal information.

Mobile Minded

  • Take precautions with your tablet or smartphone.
  • Consider opting for automatic updates for your device’s operating system and “apps” (applications) when they become available to help reduce your vulnerability to software problems.
  • Never leave your device unattended
  • Use a password or other security feature (minimum 6 digits) to restrict access in case your device is lost or stolen.
  • Make sure you enable the “time-out” or “auto-lock” feature that secures your device when it is left unused for a certain period of time.
  • Research all apps before downloading them.

*Helpful Hints Summarized from “A Cybersecurity Guide for Financial Institution Customers”, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation