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Internet/Email Scams

Phishing - This is "the practice of luring unsuspecting Internet users to a fake website by using authentic-looking emails with a real organization's logo, in an attempt to steal passwords, financial or personal information, or introduce a virus attack".

Lottery and Sweepstakes Scams - The potential victim is sent an email notification that they have won money. However, to obtain the supposed winnings the "winner" is told that he/she must pay taxes up front or some other fictitious fee. Sometimes the scammer does not require money up front, but asks for the winner's account number, supposedly to deposit the winnings, but actually to steal funds from the account.

Nigerian Scams - The email is supposedly from a citizen of another country (often Nigeria). He/She writes that they needs your help to gain access to their funds that they cannot touch because of the country's regulations. He/She offers to greatly compensate you for your help. All they need is your account number, supposedly to transfer the funds, but actually to steal funds. There are many versions of this scam, but the Nigerian version is the most common, hence the name.

Online Auction Scams - In this scenario, the victim is the seller. The buyer sends a cashier's check to the seller for an amount larger than the purchase price. The buyer asks that the difference is sent back to him/her and usually tells the seller that they can keep a little extra for the trouble. Even though it is a cashier's check, that does not mean it is safe. This check is later found to be counterfeit and the seller is out the money they sent back to the buyer.

Corporate Account Takeover - Fraudsters are trying to take over your online business accounts through a process called "corporate account takeover". By employing social engineering tactics, he or she obtains access to the victim business' PC and installs software to log key strokes or scrape images of the victim's login credentials for financial institutions. The allows the fraudster to gain access to business accounts, whereby they transfer monies to other accounts that they control or own. To protect your business:

  1. Educate yourself and your employees of the risk of Corporate Account Takeover.
  2. If possible, use a separate, dedicated PC that's sole purpose is for financial transactions. If that is not possible, limit web surfing and email usage on that computer.
  3. Deploy and use firewalls on your network and your computer.
  4. Install antivirus and antimalware software. Keep the software up-to-date.
  5. Keep your operating software and programs up-to-date.
  6. Do not click on links or open email attachments in emails unless you were expecting the attachment or link. If you receive an email that appears to be from an authority (IRS, FDIC, FBI, etc.), contact them directly through mail or telephone.
  7. Beware of phishing schemes. This may appear as an email from your financial institution requesting you to enter your username and password.
  8. Monitor your accounts daily. Ohio Valley Bank offers the following methods free of charge:
  • Text Banking. You can activate text banking by logging into NetTeller, clicking on 'options' and then 'Mobile and Text Settings'.
  • Internet Banking. You can sign up for Internet Banking by going here.
  • Telephone Banking. Call 740-446-1156, ext. 316 to sign up for this service.

Best Practices

  • Be suspicious of any email that comes from someone you do not know personally.
  • Never click on any links in a suspicious email.
  • Never give social security numbers, account numbers, passwords, or driver's license numbers over the Internet or in an email.
  • Safeguard use of credit cards on the Internet for purchases. Only buy from businesses you know. When submitting credit card information make sure that the website is secure.
  • Make sure your browser is up-to-date and apply security patches as they become available. You can do this by visiting the website of your browser's maker. For example, if you use Microsoft Internet Explorer go to
  • If you receive a suspicious email that says it is from Ohio Valley Bank, contact us immediately and verify that it really is from us. We will never ask you to email your account numbers, social security number, or passwords.
  • Sign up for the Do Not Call list.
  • Check your credit report at least once a year.
  • As always, pay close attention to your bank statements and financial affairs.

If you feel that you may be a victim of an 
Internet or email scam