Wire fraud is a virtual crime that costs businesses millions of dollars every year – and it’s on the rise. According to a report by J.P. Morgan, 60 percent of businesses faced payment fraud in 2013 and roughly 95 percent of those endured financial losses that year. There is a growing trend toward cyber-criminals targeting smaller businesses with respect to payment fraud. Some of our own customers this year have experienced wire fraud, resulting in lost dollars and a lot of frustration.
How are they doing it? Email.
Email is one of the most often used channels for wire fraud, providing an easy way for a fraudster to anonymously imitate a customer’s communication. Fraudsters often use malware to steal email login credentials; then disguised as clients, they contact your business with new wiring instructions to send payments.
What’s the best protection? Verify.
Educate your employees to review all email communication for any red flags that might make the email seem suspicious. Click the button below to view common things to look for and share it with your employees. You should always speak directly with clients over the phone or in person to validate any new wiring instructions through email. Your knowledge of your client’s voice and ability to ask personal questions that only he or she can answer serve as important protection.
There is no insurance for wire fraud. Once the money has left your account, it’s very difficult to get it back. The best protection is to be pro-active in verifying your customer or vendor information prior to sending the wire. If you do suspect fraud, time is of the essence. Contact the bank immediately. If your accounts have been compromised, they will need to be closed and new accounts established.
The OSDC recently held their annual awards luncheon in which they honor projects, lenders and banks for their commitment to growing and creating/retaining jobs throughout Ohio through the use of their small business loan programs.
Citizens National Bank was named Bank of the Year at the luncheon, citing the bank’s use of the SBA 504 loan program and the Ohio 166 program to extend long-term fixed rate financing for business real estate. OSDC is a Certified Development Company with the Small Business Administration. By partnering with banks such as CNB, they were able provide over $4 billion in 504 loans to 5,600 businesses nationwide in 2015. CNB has worked with OSDC for 15 years, the largest project being a Springhill Suites Hotel that is currently under construction in Beavercreek, OH. CNB also has a signed Lender Service Provider Agreement with the OSDC to submit SBA 7a loans on behalf of CNB. By working with the OSDC, clients in our Columbus, Springfield and Van Wert markets have all benefited by receiving long-term fixed rate financing on large projects that are contributing to the economic development of those communities.
Accepting the award on behalf of the bank were President/CEO Mike Romey, SVP City President of the Springfield office, Brock Burcham, and VP Business Banking Officer, Eric Faulkner. “We’re very proud of our involvement with the OSDC and the financing opportunities it provides our clients who otherwise may not have been able to move forward with these important projects. We’re honored to have been named Bank of the Year and look forward to continuing our involvement with the OSDC in 2016,” states Faulkner.
For more information about the awards luncheon and a full listing of all the winners, read the media release provided by the OSDC.
It only takes one time for check fraud to make a big financial impact on your business. Unfortunately, it’s still a rising threat. As a away to combat check fraud and even keep it from happening in the first place, Citizens National Bank is introducing Positive Pay. This product works within Online for Business to automate check fraud detection.
How does it work?
The business creates a file of all the checks it’s issued and uploads it to the Positive Pay system. As checks are presented for payment, they are compared to the information in that file to be sure the information matches. Fields include: payee, account number, check number and dollar amount. If any do not match, it is flagged and the business has the opportunity to pay or reject that check before any money ever leaves their account.
Positive Pay is available to any Online for Business customer. The monthly fee includes access to the system and support from our Online for Business specialists in setting up the templates. The business owner may review all exceptions up to the daily cutoff time and make the decision whether or not to pay them. If your business writes a large amount of checks, consider the peace of mind this product can offer in ensuring check fraud is detected and losses are prevented.
To see how it works, view the demo.
The days of being in the office from 9 am – 5 pm are few and far between in our mobile world. We know you’re not always able to be at your desk when you need to transfer money or approve transactions. That’s why we now offer Mobile Banking for Business. One of the first community banks to offer an app specific for business banking, we’re excited to provide this service FREE of charge to all of our Online for Business customers. If you’re already an Online for Business customer, all you need to do is go to your app store and search for “cnbohio”. Download the Citizens National Bank Business App and start banking. It uses the same login credentials and token as your regular Online for Business access and you’ll have access to all the accounts you currently do through Online for Business. If you’d like to take advantage of depositing checks through your phone, contact our Online for Business specialist to get set up.
Mobile Banking delivers the highest level of security available and it provides a great way for you to monitor your accounts wherever you are.
To learn more, view our online demo.
A combination of thorough preparation of information and a long-term relationship with their banker, Rod Stover, allowed Ron & Deb Wilker to get approval for a loan to expand their egg-laying farm in less than two weeks. Life-time farmers, the Wilkers have worked with Rod and Citizens National Bank for years and relied on that relationship as they built a new barn to house 252,000 birds and expand their family business.
Check out our entire video series at www.cnbohio.com/AboutUs/CNBVideos/Default.aspx
Earlier this year, Citizens National Bank introduced an improved leasing program which we offer to commercial and agricultural customers. Leasing offers the opportunity to acquire equipment and machinery in a cost-effective manner with often-times a smaller payment amount than purchasing. Here’s what you should know:
Why should I lease equipment instead of buy?
Leasing is flexible. Whether you have irregular cash flow or simply want to keep your line of credit free for other uses, a lease can be designed to fit your payment needs. A lease provides the use of equipment for specific periods of time at fixed rental payments. Leasing is also practical. By leasing you transfer the uncertainties and risks of equipment ownership to the lessor, which allows you to concentrate on using that equipment as a productive part of your business. Your equipment needs can change over time and leasing allows you to stay on the cutting edge of technology by not getting caught with obsolete equipment. Leasing also has possible tax advantages – check with your tax advisor. Rather than deal with depreciation schedules and Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) problems, you, the lessee, may be able to simply make the lease payment and deduct it as a business expense.
Lessees vary from small, one-person operations to Fortune 100 corporations. And the kinds of equipment being leased are just as diverse. Transactions range from a few thousand dollars’ worth of equipment to farm buildings and silos to medical equipment. 85% of companies in the US lease equipment.
How does it work?
You determine what you would like to purchase and work directly with the bank for financing. Terms can be set in a variety of ways, but typically equipment leases are made for up to five years and grain bins/barns may be made for up to ten years. For municipal and agricultural purposes, there are no taxes required on leases. They are typically set up on either annual or monthly payments. For annual payments the lease may be made for up to 80% of the value of the equipment. So for a five year lease, 20 % of the cost of the equipment would be due up front as the first payment and then four subsequent payments would be made annually over the course of the lease. Monthly payments typically require two payments up front.
Wishing You a Prosperous New Year!
2015 has been a good year for Citizens National Bank and we look forward to an even better 2016! Like you, we’re already looking forward to next year and the new opportunities that it brings. Economists are predicting positive growth in the economy and that translates to growth opportunities for your business. As you consider potential expansion, please contact us to discuss loan programs, lines of credit or cash management options that we can offer to help you succeed.
We’re always looking at new products to offer to make running your business easier. The newest include Mobile Banking for Business and Positive Pay. We know you’re on the go all the time and our mobile products will allow you to review your accounts, transfer funds and even deposit checks right through your phone. This is a FREE service for all our Online for Business customers. Simply download the app by searching for “cnbohio” to get started. Positive Pay is our newest product which offers peace of mind in preventing checking fraud. Your security is our top concern and by taking advantage of products such as this, you can stop potential loss before it happens. For questions about these products, contact our Treasury Management team.
Thanks for making Citizens National Bank part of your 2015! We wish you and your family Happy Holidays and look forward to working with you in the New Year!