Free Grant Scheme Costs Consumers

 

Staten Island’s only community-based business bank points to new grant scam

 

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y.Free grants for regular people? The chance at some string-free money might seem like a blessing. But promises of free grants are just another scam to get your money.

Recently, a fake company told people they’d already qualified for grants — up to $25,000 — that were readily available from federal, state, and local governments, private foundations, and wealthy individuals. But the grants didn’t exist, the FTC says. Instead, people were sent to sites that charged them for general information about getting grants. Even after paying, very few people qualified for any kind of grant, and those that did found it was a long, difficult process.

If that wasn’t enough, the company also was a massive robocalling scheme, making more than 8 million robocalls — almost a third of them to numbers on the Do Not Call Registry.

In addition to the importance of filing a complaint about illegal robocalls, here’s what you need to know:

    • Don’t give out your bank account information to anyone you don’t know
    • Don’t pay any money for a “free” government grant
    • Know that scammers can fake phone numbers tolook like they’re calling from Washington, D.C.

A real government agency won’t ask you to pay a processing fee for a grant you’ve already been awarded, or to pay for a list of grant-making institutions. The names of agencies and foundations that award grants are available for free at any public library or on the Internet. The only official access point for all federal grant-making agencies is grants.gov.

 

 

About Victory State Bank:

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTC: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online http://www.victorystatebank.com.

Media Inquiries:

Relevant Public Relations, LLC

Headquarters:718-682-1509

Mobile:917-715-8761

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

A Text Message That is No Prize

 

Staten Island’s only community-based commercial bank warns against text message scams.

 

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – A free iPad? A $1,000 gift card? And all for clicking on a “YOU HAVE BEEN SELECTED FOR A PRIZE” text message you got out of the blue? According to the Federal Trade Commission, text message scams are on the rise yet again.

So what can you do when you get unwanted text messages?

If you are an AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, or Sprint subscriber, report spam texts to your carrier by copying the original message and forwarding it to the number 7726 (SPAM), free of charge.

Delete the text messages. Especially ones that ask you to enter a special code, or to confirm or provide personal information. Legitimate companies don’t text or email to ask for sensitive information like your Social Security number, bank account numbers, credit card and utility account numbers, or passwords.

Don’t reply or click on links within the text message. Links can take you to spoof sites that look real but will steal your personal information.

Review your cell phone bill for unauthorized charges, and report them to your carrier.

 

 

About Victory State Bank:

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTC: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online http://www.victorystatebank.com.

Media Inquiries:

Relevant Public Relations, LLC

Headquarters:718-682-1509

Mobile:917-715-8761

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stay Alert to Online Dating Scams

 

Staten Island’s only community-based business bank wishes for everyone to have a happy and safe Valentine’s Day

 

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – We hear these stories all the time, and they tend to go a little like this: “I met this really nice woman on [fill in the name of the dating site]. Her membership was about to expire, so we switched to email. She’s from the United States, but she’s working in [fill in the name of another country]. We connected right away, and we’re planning to meet. But things are a little tight for her right now because of [fill in reason for no money]. So I wired her the money for the ticket….”

It’s easy to get caught up in the moment. It really is. You’re on a dating site to meet people, and it seems like you have. But the Federal Trade Commission suggests you let the warning bells ring if you see or hear:

    • Animmediaterequest to leave the site. Many online dating sites have protections in place to help protect you from scammers.
    • Love at first sight. Most of us are hopeful people, but wow – love based on a profile and a couple of emails?  Hmm. Sure, explore that, but watch out.
    • Any request for money. Any request. For any reason: Plane tickets, visas, a child’s (mother’s, whoever’s) hospital bill, expenses until their ship comes in…. That is a sure sign of a scam. Block and delete them and move along.
    • Any mention of wiring money. If you wire money, it’s gone. Bye-bye. You’ll never see it again. Good for scammers, bad for you.

 

So, for Valentine’s Day, do us a favor: Keep in mind that you want someone who’s after you, not your money – and that warning bells can sound like wedding bells if you’re not listening carefully.

 

 

About Victory State Bank:

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTC: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online http://www.victorystatebank.com.

Media Inquiries:

Relevant Public Relations, LLC

Headquarters:718-682-1509

Mobile:917-715-8761

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Managing Someone Else’s Money

 

Staten Island’s only community-based commercial bank points to the duties of a fiduciary

 

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – A friend at the office was just asked to serve as the guardian of her aunt’s property and help manage her finances. That started a conversation around the lunch table: It turns out that several of us know people who have signed papers making them responsible for helping a friend or family member manage their money or property — that is, who serve as fiduciaries. 

Fiduciary responsibilities depend on the needs and circumstances of the person you’re helping and on state law, but all fiduciaries have basic legal duties. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau describes the duties in a new series of publications. As a fiduciary:

    • you must act only in the best interests of the other person and make decisions that are best for him. You can’t let your needs and interests, or the needs and interests of other people, influence you. 
    • you must manage the person’s money and property carefully. You’ll be responsible for using the money to pay bills, rent or taxes, invest, and do what’s necessary for the person you’re helping.
    • you need to keep the other person’s money and property completely separate from your own. That means you can’t use joint bank accounts that combine your money and the other person’s.
    • you must keep good records of what you receive for the other person and what you spend. You may have to file a report with the court or government agency that named you as the fiduciary.

 

About Victory State Bank:

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTC: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online http://www.victorystatebank.com.

Media Inquiries:

Relevant Public Relations, LLC

Headquarters:718-682-1509

Mobile:917-715-8761

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  

Fake Funeral Notice Can Be Deadly — For Your Computer

 

Staten Island’s only community-based commercial bank warns of new malware scam

 

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – Scam artists are forever trying to trick people into clicking on links that will download malware to their computers. But the latest scam takes the tricks to a new low.

Scammers are sending bogus emails with the subject line "funeral notification." The message appears to be from a legitimate funeral home, offers condolences, and invites you to click on a link for more information about the upcoming "celebration of your friend’s life service." But instead of sending you to the funeral home's website, the link sends you to a foreign domain where the scammers download malware to your computer.

Malware, short for “malicious software," includes viruses and spyware that get installed on your computer without your consent. These programs can cause your device to crash and can be used to monitor and control your online activity. Criminals use malware to steal personal information, send spam, and commit fraud.

If you get an email about a friend or loved one’s passing, the Federal Trade Commission, the nation’s consumer protection agency, says hit Delete. Don’t click on the link. You may then want to contact the funeral home or family directly to verify the information.

To reduce your risk of downloading unwanted malware and spyware:

    • Keep your security software updated.
    • Don't click on any links or open any attachments in emails unless you know who sent it and what it is.
    • Download and install software only from websites you know and trust.
    • Make sure your browser security setting is high enough to detect unauthorized downloads.
    • Use a pop-up blocker and don't click on any links within pop-ups.
    • Resist buying software in response to unexpected pop-up messages or emails, especially ads that claim to have scanned your computer and detected malware. That's a tactic scammers use to spread malware.
    • Back up your data regularly.

 

 

About Victory State Bank:

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTC: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online http://www.victorystatebank.com.

Media Inquiries:

Relevant Public Relations, LLC

Headquarters:718-682-1509

Mobile:917-715-8761

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.