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Financial Literacy

Fraud Education Center

Fight fraud with knowledge.

Fraud and Security Prevention

Your financial well-being is important to us. We want to protect your good credit, personal information, and your hard-earned money! American Bank & Trust will never request account information from you over the internet.

If you suspect you may be a victim of fraud or have any related questions, please contact us.

To help keep you on the lookout, we have provided detailed information on the following common fraud scams.

Fraud Alerts powered by Visa ®

Help reduce fraud and monitor your spending anytime, anywhere with complimentary security Alerts from American Bank & Trust powered by Visa. This unique service is available free for American Bank and Trust’s Consumer Visa Check/Credit cardholders!

You’ll receive an alert through text message, email or both. If there is fraudulent activity, you can find out within minutes and act quickly to resolve the situation.

You can choose to receive alerts when your Consumer Visa Check/Credit Card is used for purchases over a specified amount, online transactions, purchases outside the United States, and more.

Click here to sign up today for Alerts from American Bank & Trust powered by Visa. You will need your American Bank & Trust Consumer Visa Check/Credit Card number and the ability to receive a mobile phone text message and/or email.

Disclosure: Actual time to receive Alerts powered by Visa dependent on wireless service and coverage within area. Alerts service may not be available in all areas. Gasoline alerts may not include purchase amount. Account activity qualifying for Alert service may vary by issuer. Additional restrictions apply.

Identity Theft

Customers are encouraged to visit the Federal Trade Commission’s official website for information and tips on combating the growing problem of Identity Theft.

Reporting Identity Theft and Account Fraud

If you're a victim of identity theft or account fraud, you should call a Personal Banker representative immediately at (877) 626-2265.

  • Call the Toll Free fraud number of any one of the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit report. As soon as the credit bureau confirms your fraud alert, the other two credit bureaus will automatically be notified to place fraud alerts on your credit report, and all three reports will be sent to you free of charge.
  • Contact your local police and ask to file a report. Even if the police can't catch the identity thief, having a police report can help you in clearing up your credit records later on.
  • File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Call the FTC's identity theft hotline Toll Free at (877) IDTHEFT (438-4338). The hotline is staffed by counselors trained to help victims and take their complaints. You may also file a complaint online at
  • Complete the identity theft affidavit, which will assist you in reporting to many companies that a new account has been opened in your name.

Preventing Online Fraud

On the Web, there are types of criminals called "phishers". These people may send very realistic e-mails pretending to be from American Bank & Trust or some other organization you know and trust. These e-mails ask the recipient to click on various links to American Bank & Trust websites. Do not click on the links or respond to the messages. Doing so may cause you to be redirected to a fraudulent site.

American Bank & Trust will never contact you to request personal information such as Social Security Numbers, account numbers, user IDs, Visa® debit or ATM card numbers, PINs or passwords via e-mail, telephone or by fax. Do not respond to these requests. These are fraudulent attempts to obtain your information. If you receive such a request, please contact us immediately at (877) 626-2265.

E-mail Use:

  • Be alert for fraudulent e-mails, even though they appear to be from a reputable source.
  • Delete any e-mail that requests your personal information immediately. Do not respond to it. Reputable businesses never request personal information in an e-mail.
  • Never send your personal information via an unsecured e-mail.
  • Do not open e-mail attachments from unknown or unsolicited senders.
  • Be careful when clicking on a link in an e-mail. Even though it is identical to the actual company's website, it could be fraudulent. To check, open a new browser window and manually type in the URL provided in the e-mail. If they don't match, delete the e-mail with the suspicious link immediately.

Online Security:

  • If you visit a website that is not what it claims to be, leave it immediately.
  • Only do business with companies you know and trust.
  • Watch carefully for imitation websites that are designed to trick you into giving out personal information.
  • Any sites that you do business with should have privacy and security statements. Read them carefully.
  • Choose passwords or Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) that are difficult to guess and use a different password for each of your internet accounts. Change these passwords often.
  • Make sure the website is certified with a digital security certificate by clicking on the "closed lock" or "solid key" image located in the bottom bar of your browser window. A small frame with site security information

Preventing Identity Theft and Account Fraud

We want to make sure our customers are aware of the dangers of identity theft. Identity theft occurs when criminals find a way to steal your personal or other identifying information to access your accounts, open new accounts, apply for credit in your name, make purchases, and commit other fraud related crimes.

The best defense against identity theft is knowledge. The following tips and information will help you prevent identity theft:

Debit and Credit Card Tips

Sign debit and credit cards immediately after they arrive. Track credit, debit and ATM receipts and never throw them in a public trash receptacle. Keep an eye on your debit or credit card until the merchant completes your transaction, and make sure you get your card back. Do not keep passwords or ATM PINs in your wallet, purse, desk or organizer.

Report lost or stolen checks or ATM, debit and credit cards immediately

Review new checks to make sure none were stolen in transit. Be aware of the expiration date on your debit or credit card; if you do not receive a reissued card before the expiration date, notify a Personal Banker.

Monitor your accounts for unauthorized use

Online banking makes it easy to review your transactions online daily.

Check your credit reports

American Bank & Trust recommends that you periodically check your credit report. You can obtain a copy of your credit report at any time from one of the three major credit bureaus:

Pay attention to your billing and account statement cycles

If regular bills or statements stop arriving in the mail, take action. Call the company's customer service number. Someone may have filed a false change-of-address notice to divert your mail.

Guard your mail from theft

Deposit outgoing mail in post office collection boxes or at your local post office rather than in an unsecured mailbox. Promptly remove mail from your mailbox. If you're planning to be away from home and can't pick up your mail, call the U.S. Postal Service at (800) 275-8777 to request a vacation hold.

Be alert for e-mail hoaxes and suspicious phone inquiries

These may appear to come from a trusted business or friend, but actually are designed to trick you into providing sensitive information. Don't provide personal or financial information to anyone unless you initiated the contact.

American Bank & Trust will never contact you to request personal information such as Social Security Numbers, account numbers, user IDs, Visa® debit or ATM card numbers, PINs or passwords via e-mail, phone or by fax. Do not respond to these attempts to obtain your personal information. If you have received such a request, please contact a Personal Banker representative immediately at (877) 626-2265

Protect Personal Information

Protect your Social Security Number

Don't list it on your checks or carry your Social Security Number card unless you need it. Give your Social Security Number only when absolutely necessary. Ask to use other types of identifiers when possible.

Shred unnecessary financial documents, including old bank statements, invoices, charge receipts, checks, unwanted pre-approved credit offers, and expired charge cards before disposing of them.

Choose unique passwords to access your accounts online

Don't use any part of your Social Security Number, birth date, middle name, names of spouses, children or pets, consecutive numbers or anything else that a thief could easily discover. Choose passwords that are difficult for others to guess and use a different password for each of your online accounts. Use both letters and numbers. Do not share your IDs or passwords with anyone.

Mobile Fraud

By 2040, the number of smartphone users in the U.S. is expected to surpass 300 million, nearly 96 percent of the population. Negotiating security in the face of an ever-growing implementation of mobile devices presents serious challenges for organizations.

Below are some key actions your users can take to help minimize the likelihood of a successful cyber attack.

Regularly Update Your Device

Mobile malware increased 67 percent in 2022 and further increases in malware are expected in 2023, particularly in mobile ransom ware. Updated operating systems and security software are critical in protecting against emerging threats.

Enable Encryption

One of the best ways to safeguard information stored on your smartphone is to enable encryption to thwart unauthorized access.

Use a Passcode

Don’t make it easy for someone to access all of your important information in case your phone ever does fall into the wrong hands! Enable strong password protection on your device and include a timeout requiring authentication after a period of inactivity. Secure the smartphone with a unique password — not the default one it came with. Don’t share your password with others.

Don’t Use Public Wi-Fi

Don’t log into accounts and don’t conduct any sensitive transactions, such as shopping or banking, while using public Wi-Fi. Disable the “automatically connect to Wi-Fi” setting on your device.

Install Applications from Trusted Sources

When downloading apps, be proactive and make sure you read the privacy statement, review permissions, check the app reviews and look online to see if any security company has identified the app as malicious.

Install a Phone Locator/Remote Erase App

A misplaced device doesn’t have to be a catastrophe if it has a locater app. Many apps allow you to log on to another computer and see your device’s exact location on a map. Remote erase apps allow you to remotely wipe data from your device, helping minimize unauthorized access to your information in the event you can’t locate the device.

Disable Unwanted Services When Not in Use

Bluetooth® and near-field communication (NFC) can provide an easy way for an unauthorized user nearby to gain access to your data. Turn these features off when they’re not required.

Carefully Dispose of Mobile Devices

With the constant changes in the smartphone market, many users frequently upgrade to new devices. Make sure you wipe the information from your smartphone before disposal. For information on how to do this, check the website of your mobile provider or the manufacturer

Computer Safety/Social Media

Use up-to-date anti-virus, anti-spyware and anti-adware software. Apply recommended patches to your operating system and software. Use privacy and security settings in your software, email system and Web browsers. New strains of malicious software are appearing all the time, it’s imperative to regularly update anti-virus software to identify, scan systems and thwart the newest threats.

Never use simple or easy-to-guess passwords like “123456,” “p@$$word” or “football.” Cybercriminals use automated programs that will try every word in the dictionary within a few minutes. When creating a password, use at least 10 characters with a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.

Be cautious about all communications you receive, including those purported to be from friends and family, and be careful when clicking on links in those messages. When in doubt, DELETE.

Use privacy settings to limit who can see the details of your social network pages, and be smart about what you decide to share online.

Travel Tips

When traveling, keep electronic devices with you at all times.

Before traveling abroad, change all passwords that you’ll use while traveling. Upon your return, change the passwords of any accounts that were accessed while traveling. This includes passwords used by social media websites and email providers for which you have automatic logins.

Don’t access sensitive accounts (such as bank and credit card accounts) or conduct sensitive transactions over public networks (such as hotel and airport Wi-Fi, business centers and Internet cafes).

Use wired connections instead of Bluetooth® or Wi-Fi connections whenever possible.

Electronic Confidentiality Safeguards - Our Security Procedures

We restrict access to nonpublic personal information about you to those employees who need to know that information to provide products or services to you. We maintain physical, electronic, and procedural safeguards that comply with federal standards to guard your nonpublic personal information.

E-mail Communications

Please be aware that using ordinary e-mail communications to originate a message to us is a form of insecure electronic communication. We will not be held liable for the possible inappropriate use of information sent by e-mail over the Internet. Due to unknown third-parties' usual involvement in the routing and transmittal of ordinary unencrypted e-mail, our Privacy Policy shall not apply to the extent that e-mail passes beyond the electronic communications network we administer. Personal information (account numbers, identification numbers, etc.) considered to be confidential by a user of these electronic services should not be included in the unencrypted content of e-mails addressed to us. Usually First Class Mail, phone conversations with a known bank associate, or personal visits to our nearest office are better alternatives when communicating with us about sensitive matters. You can also use our encrypted Internet messaging service within our Online Banking suite to safely convey sensitive information and instructions to us.

We want you to know!

American Bank and Trust Company, N.A. follows a business practice of never initiating a request for non-public information via a voice phone call or by sending you an email message, a facsimile (“fax”) transmission, and/or a text message. The Bank will never send you an electronic message with an embedded link for you to “click on” (select) to respond with non-public confidential information, such as a social security number, account number, birth date, User ID information, password, etc. When pointing your Internet browser to the Bank’s website at you agree to be reasonably prudent and confirm the website you have accessed is and not a third-party website with a similar, but different, website address. You agree that if you ever have any doubts or suspicion about the authenticity of a communication you receive that is purporting to originate from American Bank and Trust Company, N.A., you will seek independent confirmation of the message by contacting a branch manager or one of our officers familiar to you at the Bank via a personal on-site visit to a Bank office or through a different communications channel, such as the secure messaging service within your Internet online e-banking subscription with us or by calling our Client Services department directly at (563) 441-6524 or toll-free at (877) 626-2265, ext. 6524 during weekday and Saturday morning Central Time zone office hours.

Electronic Access Privacy

When you access our Online Banking services, a small file commonly referred to as a "cookie" may be stored on the electronic device you use when communicating with us through the Internet. Through an automatic monitoring program, we may keep track of how often visits are made to our Website and/or Online Banking services, the date and time of each visit, and the pages accessed within the visited domain site. Neither the cookie file nor the monitoring procedures provide us with any personal information about you.

Electronic Security

We assign a unique User ID and require the use of a Personal Identification Number ("PIN") or password, which must be periodically changed by you, when permitting electronic access to your non-public information. You are expected to keep your PINs and passwords a secret to avoid compromising the security measures intended to prevent unauthorized information disclosures. We have instructed our personnel to never ask you for your PIN or password when providing service. Our service departments and third-party technical support vendors use a variety of electronic safeguards, such as electronic firewalls, to provide reasonable assurances concerning the integrity and security of all your non-public information.

Evaluate Your Internet Browser and Network Security

Please be aware of your responsibilities to initially evaluate and regularly review the security settings of your electronic devices at home and work, as well as the security settings and safeguard hardware or software associated with third-party provided electronic devices you may use to electronically conduct business with us.