Oak Ridge, N.J. – January 26, 2015 – In recognition of National Data Privacy Day on Jan. 28, Lakeland Bank is urging customers to take an active role in protecting their data.  

“Lakeland Bank’s first priority is to protect our customers’ money and information,” said Robert Vandenbergh, Chief Operating Officer. “We use a combination of safeguards to protect our customers’ information, and we encourage our customers to partner with us in that effort.”

To help ensure the safety of personal information, Lakeland Bank suggests following these four tips: 

  1. Create c0mplic@t3d passwords. Avoid birthdays, pet names and simple passwords such as 12345. It is also important to change passwords at least three times a year. Friendly theft – theft by someone the victim knows – is the most common type of identity theft or fraud so don’t share your passwords with family members and be mindful of who has access to your personal information.
  2. Keep tabs on your accounts. With online and mobile connectivity, it’s easy to check your account activity and statements frequently. You are the first line of defense because you know right away if a transaction is fraudulent. If you notice unusual or unauthorized activity, notify your bank immediately. When a customer reports an unauthorized transaction in a timely manner, the bank will cover the loss and take measures to protect the account.
  3. Stay alert online.Be sure computers and mobile devices are equipped with up-to-date anti-virus and malware protection.Never provide personal financial information in response to an unsolicited email, no matter how official it may seem. Your bank will never contact you by email asking for your password, PIN, or account information. When submitting financial information on a website, look for the padlock or key icon at the top or bottom of the browser, and make sure the Internet address begins with “https.” This signals that your information is secure during transmission.
  4. Mobilize your defenses. Use the passcode lock on your smartphone and other devices. This makes it more difficult for thieves to access your information if your device is lost or stolen. Before you donate, sell or trade your mobile device, be sure to wipe it using specialized software or the manufacturer’s recommended technique. Some software can wipe a device remotely if it is lost or stolen. Use caution downloading apps and avoid opening links and attachments as they may contain malware, especially from senders you don’t know.

Tips for Victims:

If you are a victim of fraud or suspect your personal information has been compromised, you should take the following steps:

  • Call your bank and credit card issuers immediately so they can take steps to protect your account.
  • File a police report and call the fraud unit of the three credit-reporting companies.
  • Consider placing a victim statement in your credit report and a fraud alert on your account.
  • Keep a log of all the contacts you make with authorities regarding the matter. Write down names, titles, and phone numbers in case you need to re-contact or refer to them in future correspondence.
  • Contact the FTC’s ID Theft Consumer Response Center at 1-877-ID THEFT (1-877-438-4338) or www.ftc.gov/idtheft.

Data Privacy Day commemorates the 1981 signing of the first legally binding international treaty dealing with privacy and data protection. It is led by the National Cyber Security Alliance, a non-profit, public- private partnership focused on cyber security education for all online citizens.

About Lakeland Bank

Lakeland Bancorp (NASDAQ: LBAI), the holding company for Lakeland Bank, has $3.5 billion in total assets with 51 offices spanning eight northern New Jersey counties: Bergen, Essex, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren. Lakeland Bank, headquartered in Oak Ridge, offers an extensive array of consumer and commercial products and services, including online and mobile banking, localized commercial lending teams, an expanded residential mortgage lending platform and 24-hour-or-less turnaround on consumer loan applications. For more information about the full line of products and services, visit LakelandBank.com.

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