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Holiday Shopping Safety Tips

The holidays are a celebration of the joy of life, a time for faith, reflection, and festivity. Regrettably, the holidays are also a time of increased theft and fraud. There are many who see the holidays as a time to prey upon others for their own financial benefit.

America’s First would like to help you shop safely this holiday season.
Follow these tips to protect yourself from fraudsters and thieves.

  1. Always insert the chip. The chip in your card provides enhanced fraud protection and enables fast and secure transactions. Swiping the magnetic stripe is outdated, much less secure, and could cause your transaction to be declined.
  2. Cover your PIN. Cover up your keystrokes with your other hand or sleeve anytime you enter your PIN. This will help protect you from hidden cameras and “shoulder surfers.”
  3. Put a travel alert on your account. If you are traveling out of state let us know at the branch or call member services at 205-320-4000 or toll-free 1-800-633-843 before you leave town.
  4. Use AmFirst Alerts. Be sure to respond if you receive a text from AmFirst Alerts, short code 47334. This means a suspicious transaction has happened on your card and we need to verify it. Also, download the AmFirst Alerts App which includes additional security features such as the ability to turn your debit card on and off.
  5. Use a mobile wallet. Mobile wallets such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay provide another secure method for making purchases.
  6. Secure your card and cash. Minimize the time these things are outside your purse or pocket. Don’t handle your card or cash in public.
  7. Let us know immediately if your card is lost or stolen.
  8. Be situationally aware. Keep an eye on your surroundings. Shop during daylight hours or with another person you know. Avoid overloading yourself with packages and bags. Park in well-lighted areas and don’t leave packages or valuables visible in your car. Consider carrying your wallet in your front pocket or wearing your purse cross-body style. Be cautious of strangers approaching you for any reason, they may be trying to distract you with the intention of taking your money or belongings.

Thank you for your membership and support.
Have a safe and spectacular holiday season!