Latest data breaches hit close to home

EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – There have been countless cases of security breaches at major retailers like Target, Neiman Marcus and Michaels, but Easthampton Savings Bank uncovered instances where your debit or credit card information’s at risk shopping at local businesses.

Timothy Babyok of Easthampton told 22News he tries to protect his information, but sometimes it’s out of his hands. “On my card it says check signature and they don’t even really do that anymore. They just scan the card real quick and who knows what happens after that point.”

Easthampton Savings Bank Executive Lynn Starr told 22News the bank has a fraud watch prevention system in place that alerts the bank to potential fraudulent charges.

The bank can not release the names of businesses impacted by the fraud, but a Cybersecurity Professor warns this could become a popular trend for hackers.

According to Larry Snyder, a Cybersecurity Professor at Bay Path College, “This is probably where we see the shift to easier; lower hanging fruit for people that are interested in stealing things; small to medium size businesses that just aren’t as well protected.”

To protect yourself while shopping locally, cover the PIN Pad when entering your pin number, sign up for banking alerts, and keep an eye on your bank statements.

If you’re a small business owner, there are ways you can protect your business from being hacked:

The Easthampton Savings Bank recommends that local merchants have a trained and experienced IT professional review their point-of-sale and computer networks for any vulnerability that fraudsters can attack. Also, have a full review of the security of their entire card-payments system.

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