Online Safety Tips

O N L I N E    S A F E T Y    T I P S


Information you submit via our online banking service is protected by encryption technology which scrambles account information to reduce the possibility of access by unauthorized individuals outside Zavala County Bank. To further protect your online banking service, Zavala County Bank requires the use of an ID and password as well as additional security measures. Our system automatically logs you off when there is no browser activity for an extended period of time.


Zavala County Bank WILL NOT ask for personal information, such as account numbers or passwords in an e-mail.

Watch for Phishing:

Phishing is the use of fraudulent e-mail that appears to come from your bank or another trusted business but is actually from an imposter. Such e-mail asks customers to verify personal information or contains links to copycat websites that appear real.

Recognize Phishing by Watching for E-mails that:

  • Do not address you by name or use a generic greeting such as “Dear Customer”
  • Insist you act quickly because your account may be closed or locked
  • Ask for account numbers, passwords or other personal information
    • Please Remember: Zavala County Bank will never ask you for your personal information, such as account numbers or passwords, in an e-mail. Do not respond to any e-mail that tells you to update your personal information online or by dialing a telephone number. Use only the customer service number of your local bank.

Prevent Phishing:

  • Ensure your anti-virus software automatically scans attachments (or scan them manually prior to opening them)
  • Verify that the e-mail sender’s address is what you would expect
  • Be suspicious of e-mail attachments from a stranger
  • Never send confidential information in an e-mail
  • Always use an up-to-date browser with at least 128-bit encryption


Zavala County Bank WILL NOT ask for personal information, such as account numbers or passwords in pop-up window.

Watch for Pharming:

Pharming is the practice of redirecting Internet users to a fake website, even when they enter the correct address. It can also take the form of counterfeit pop-ups that appear as legitimate websites. These copycat sites often look real, but secretly collect any personal information and passwords entered. Users end up at fraudulent sites by having spyware or a virus on their computer, or maybe because of sophisticated hacker tricks (see additional information on viruses and spyware).

Recognize Pharming:

  • watch for any changes to the logon screen
  • never enter any information if you are asked for anything out of the ordinary
  • check the website address to know you are safe:
    • a website address that begins with or belongs to Zavala County Bank

Prevent Pharming:

  • Guard your Bank EZ User ID and online PIN, change them regularly and do not give your user ID, online PIN or other account access information to anyone
  • Never select the option to store passwords in your browser, as viruses and spyware can find and transmit them to thieves
  • If you use a wireless router to connect to the Internet, make sure you create your own secure password for it, rather than relying on the default password
  • Always use an up-to-date browser with at least 128-bit encryption
  • Use a pop-up blocker (you can check with your Internet service provider to see if they have one available)
  • Log off of when you are finished



  • A virus is a program that can embed itself into other programs on your computer, potentially causing damage to your files. Viruses often infect computers through e-mail attachments, but also come from CDs, websites and downloaded files.
  • Watch for e-mails that: are from someone you do not know or have not received before; are from someone you know, but include unexpected attachments; are from someone you know, but the subject line does not make sense based on the sender; contain links to unknown or suspicious websites
    • Remember: Avoid opening and reading unsolicited e-mails and scan your e-mail attachments automatically or manually


  • Spyware are malicious programs that run undetected on personal computers and allow thieves remote access to your system or information.
  • Watch for e-mails attachments or Internet downloads that end with “.exe” or “.dll”; a high volume of pop-up ads appearing on your computer; a sudden change in your browser’s home page; sluggish or slow performance when opening programs or saving files; unexpected toolbars that appear on your browser

Preventing Viruses and Spyware

  • Install an anti-virus program and a firewall
  • Keep your operating system, Internet browsers and anti-virus/anti-spyware software up-to-date
  • Download software only from sites you know and trust
  • Do not click on links inside pop-up windows

Understanding Identity Theft

Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personal information (name, address, Social Security number, bank or credit card account numbers) to commit fraud or other crimes, such as:

  • Committing credit card fraud by changing your billing address
  • Opening new credit cards under your name
  • Authorizing electronic transfers in your name
  • Using your name in the event of an arrest
  • And much more…

Recognizing Identity Theft

Remain alert for signs of identity theft:

  • Failing to receive bills or other mail
  • Receiving suspicious charges on your credit card bills and other statements
  • Receiving credit cards you did not apply for
  • Being denied credit for no apparent reason
  • Getting calls or letters about merchandise or services you did not buy

Preventing Identity Theft

Take the following steps to reduce the risk of identity theft:

  • Do not provide personal information over the phone, mail or Internet unless you trust the source
  • Carry only the identification information and the credit/debit cards you need
  • Deposit your outgoing mail at your local post office instead of in an unsecured mailbox
  • Examine your credit card billing statements carefully
  • Shred receipts, checks, credit applications, insurance forms and bank statements
  • Pick up your mail promptly and if you will be away, have someone pick up your mail or request a vacation hold

Remember These Steps to Security

S - Secure your personal information, passwords and PINs
E - Examine your statements carefully
C - Carry only the identification and credit/debit cards you need
U - Update your browser and operating system
R - Recognize unusual e-mails and activity
 I - Install anti-virus and firewall software
T - Tell us immediately about any concerns/questions you may have
Y - Your information security is important to us!