First Midwest Education Find the answers you need.

Checkbook Tools

  • Writing checks is easy, with a little practice. When you write checks, always use a blue or black ink pen and write neatly. Every time you write a check, you’ll fill in the following six areas:

    It is important to write your check legibly to make sure your check is accurately processed.

    1. Date: Write the date.
    2. Pay to the Order of: Write the name of the check’s recipient.
    3. $ Amount: Write the check’s amount using numerals. When you write the number, start at the left and don’t leave space. People could add in more numbers if you do.
    4. Dollars: Write, in words, how much the check is for. When you write the words for the dollars, start at the left side. Write any cents as a fraction. (See sample.) Draw a line through the extra space.
    5. Signature: Sign your name on the signature line, just like it is on the top of the check. Don’t sign it until you use it. If you sign it ahead of time, someone else could use the check.
    6. Memo: Note what the payment is for. (See sample.)
  • If you’ve got a job, chances are you get paid with a check. To deposit that check, you need to endorse it. That means you sign your name in ink on the back of the check. Sign your name the same way it’s written on the check. If your name is spelled wrong, also sign your name the correct way on the next line.

    There are a few ways to endorse your check.

     

    Blank Endorsement

    Sign your name the same way it’s written on the front of the check. Only sign it when you’re ready to cash it or deposit the money into your account. Once the check is signed on the back (endorsed), someone else could get your money if you lose the check.

    Special Endorsement

    Do this when you want to give someone else the money. Write “pay to the order of” and that person’s name below it. Then sign your name underneath. Now only that person can cash the check. (See sample.)

     

    Restrictive Endorsement

    When you want your check to be very safe, such as when you send it to your financial institution in the mail, use this kind of endorsement. Write “for deposit only” and sign underneath. Now the check can only be deposited into your account, not cashed. (See sample.)

     

  • Here is what can happen if you write checks without enough money in your account:

    Don’t write checks for more money than you have in your account. You might have heard it called “bouncing a check,”or “writing a bad check.” The financial institution calls it non-sufficient funds (NSF).

    • You could be charged an overdraft fee by your financial institution.
    • The place to which you wrote the “bad” check could charge you another fee.
    • The place to which you wrote the “bad” check could decide not to take your checks in the future.
    • Your name could go on a risk check or “risk credit” list, and other places won’t take your checks.
    • Your checking account could be closed by your financial institution and you won’t be allowed to write any checks at all. Your financial institution may report this information to other financial institutions, and they may refuse to open a checking account for you for up to seven years after your account was closed.
    • You could get letters and phone calls from the people you owe the money to.

    BUT… It’s easy to keep these things from happening. Just keep track of how much money you have in your checking account, and don’t write checks for more than that amount.

    Don’t sign blank checks. They can be stolen and used by someone else.

    Don’t erase mistakes on a check. Either write VOID across the entire check and next to its number in the check register and tear up the check, or fix the check and write your initials next to the mistake.

    Don’t use other people’s checks or let them use yours.

    Don’t use a pencil, only use a pen. People can erase the numbers when you write in pencil. Always use a blue or black ink pen.

  • Keep all your checks in a safe place. Checks are money and can be stolen and used by other people, just like cash.If your checks are ever lost or stolen, call your financial institution immediately!

    Keep track of the money you take out of the ATM and debit card withdrawals made—they add up quickly.

    Put the right date on your checks.

    Sign your name like it’s printed on the check.

  • In this section we’ll talk about how to keep records. The first thing we’ll cover is how to reconcile your accounts. That just means you’ll see how much you deposited into your account, how much you spent, and how much you have left. To reconcile your account you do two things: First, look at your check register and your statement together and compare them. Here’s how to start.

    1. First open the envelope with your statement. If your financial institution sends your canceled checks to you, they will also be in the envelope. Many financial institutions keep the real checks and return a list or picture image of your check or substitute check, on your statement.
    2. If you get your checks back, put them in order according to the check number.
    3. Look at the statement; find the first check number listed.
    4. Look at your check register. Find that same check number and place a check mark in the column labeled (√ or “Code*”). Do this for every check on your statement.
    5. Do Steps 3 and 4 above for every deposit. Check it off on your statement and check it off on your register.
    6. If you see checks in your check register that are not listed on the statement, they have not cleared the financial institution yet. Don’t check them off. They will be listed on a future statement.
    7. If you have any other service fees or charges for checks, ATM withdrawals, financial institution services, or automatic deductions (i.e. a car loan) listed on your statement, write them in your check register. Don’t forget to subtract those charges from your balance in your check register.
    8. If your financial institution pays interest on your checking account, add the interest amount to your check register.
    9. Now your checkbook should be up-to-date.

  • If you think there is an error in your statement, please telephone or write us promptly at the phone number or address shown on the front of your statement.

    Most of the time, your checkbook balance and the statement won’t match. That is normal. This happens because of those outstanding checks we discussed earlier and any deposits that you made after the statement was printed.

    Your statement will include a reconciliation form (usually on the back). This is a form to help you reconcile your account. Just like all the other forms we’ve talked about, there are spots for you to fill in.

     

    1. List deposits, checks, and other withdrawals that you have written in your check register, but are not listed on the statement in the proper columns.
    2. Write down the total of the deposit list and the checks/withdrawals list.
    3. Write down the ending balance printed on the front of your statement.
    4. Enter the total deposits from line 2. Add lines 3 and 4, enter on subtotal line.
    5. Enter the total withdrawals from line 2 and subtract from subtotal.
    6. Now the balance of your checkbook should match the ending balance on your statement.
  • You can put cash and checks into your account in different ways. When you’re ready to deposit money at your financial institution, you need to fill out a form called a deposit ticket. You’ll find your deposit tickets in your checkbook, behind the checks. They have printing on both sides. Just like with the checks and the check register, there are areas you need to complete. Use a pen to fill out the form. It is very important that you write neatly. Here are the spots to fill in on your deposit ticket.

    1. Date: The date you are depositing money.
    2. Cash: The amount of cash you are depositing. Add it all together, and write it down here.
    3. Check Entry Area: This is where you write down each check you’re depositing. Put each check amount on its own line.
    4. Additional Check Entry Area: The back also has space for checks, if you run out of room on the front.
    5. Total From Other Side: If you have more than three checks and wrote them down on the back side, add them up and put the total here. If you are depositing three checks, this is the place you write down the third one.
    6. Sub Total: Add items 2, 3 and 5
    7. Less Cash Received: If you want to deposit part of the money, and get part of the money in cash, write down how much you want to receive in cash.
    8. Sign Here: If you want cash back, sign your name here.
    9. Net Deposit: Add all the cash and all the checks together. If you are receiving cash back, subtract that amount. The result is your net deposit. Write down that amount here.

    Front Side

    Back Side

  • Every month, you’ll get a statement from your financial institution. This statement tells you:

    • Every check that you wrote (the ones that have been processed— see example on next page).
    • Money you took out of the ATM, transferred by telephone or any other withdrawals.
    • All of your debit card transactions.
    • All of your deposits.
    • Your ending balance (how much you have in your account on the date the statement was printed).

    The envelope containing your statement may also contain your canceled checks. You may receive pictures or images of the checks you’ve written, or a paper document or image of a substitute check, (go to page 11). These are the checks you’ve already written that have been cleared (paid out of your account) by your financial institution. Any checks you’ve written that have not cleared are called outstanding checks.

    The purpose of your monthly statement is to give you information about your account’s activity every month. Here are the different sections:

     

    1. Return Address: This is where your financial institution sends your statement from.
    2. Account Information: Here is where you will find your personal information, like the type of account you have, account number and social security number.
    3. Deposits: This is where your deposits are listed. You’ll see the date and the amount of money you deposited.
    4. Checks and Deductions: These are all the checks you wrote for the month. You’ll see the date, the check number, and the amount you wrote the check for. If you see dots or stars between the check numbers, that means either you are missing a check, or that the check is outstanding. You’ll also find your ATM and other withdrawals here.
    5. Daily Balances: You’ll see dates listed, and how much money was in your account on that day. 5 4 3 2 1 9 Review Your Monthly Statement
    6. Ending Balance: Here is a summary of your account for the month. You’ll see how much money you started with, how many withdrawals you made, how much money you deposited, and how much money you have left in your account.
    7. Customer Service Number: This is the phone number you can call if you have

    Remember, if there is something you don’t understand about your account, call the number you see on your statement to get your questions answered by your financial institution’s customer service.

  • A check register helps you keep track of the money in your checking account. That’s where you write down everything you do with your account. Whenever you deposit money or withdraw money, or use your ATM or debit card, write it in the check register immediately.

    When you write something in your check register, we call it recording a transaction. So let’s take a look at a check register and how it works.

    The columns in your check register are labeled. Here’s what each column is for:

    Transaction Codes

    • ATM, Automatic Teller Machine
    • D, Deposit
    • DC, Debit Card
    • E, Electronic Check
    • TT, Telephone Transfer
    • T, Tax Deductible
    • O, Other

    1. Number: This is the check number. You’ll find it in the upper right corner of each check. Every check has a different sequential number.
    2. Date: Write the date you wrote the check.
    3. Description of Transaction: This tells what you did. Did you deposit money? Write a check? Use the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or debit machine? Make a telephone transfer? Describe your transaction here.
    4. Payment/ Debit: Write the check or withdrawal amount.
    5. Code for Transaction: This is where you fill in a code for transactions you make when you aren’t writing a check. When you get your statement, every month you’ll place a “” through this box when you see the transaction listed.
    6. Service Fee: If your financial institution charges you money to write each check or to withdraw money from the ATM, write that fee in this space.
    7. Deposit/Credit: Did you deposit money into your account? Write down any deposit into your account.
    8. Balance: To find out how much money you have, add the deposited money to what you had before. Or subtract the withdrawal amount from what you had before. The money left is your balance.
  • Automated Teller Machine (ATM): Also known as the money machine or cash machine.

    Bad Check: A check that is written when there is not enough money in the account. Also known as a bounced check.

    Balance: The amount of money you have in your account.

    Cash: Money in the form of bills or coins.

    Check: A document used for payment.

    Check 21: Federal legislation passed in 2004 that permits financial institutions to create and submit substitute checks from electronic images for processing.

    Check Register: A form to keep track of your checking account transactions.

    Checking Account: A payment method to manage your money efficiently.

    Cleared Check: A check that has gone through the financial institution’s processing center and is listed on your monthly statement.

    Debit Card: A card that can be used at an ATM or merchant. Unlike a credit card, the funds are deducted from your checking account.

    Deposit: The money you put into your account. Or (verb) to put money into your account.

    Deposit Ticket: The form you use to put money into your account.

    Electronic Check: When you write a check to a merchant and the merchant hands the check back to you. The check is converted to an automatic deduction to your checking account.

    Endorse: To sign your name on the back of a check in order to cash it or deposit it.

    Financial Institution: A business that deals with money. For example, a bank or credit union.

    Less Cash Received: The amount of cash you get back when you make a deposit.

    Memo: The area on a check that notes what the check was written to pay for.

    Non-sufficient Funds: See Bad Check.

    Non-sufficient Funds Fee: The fee that is charged by a financial institution or business when a check does not clear.

    Outstanding Check: A check that is still going through financial institution processing.

    Overdraft: When your account goes below zero—there is not enough money to cover the withdrawal.

    Reconcile: A process to make sure your checkbook balance matches your financial institution’s balance for your account.

    Reconciliation: When you have verified that your checkbook balance is the same as your financial institution’s balance for your account.

    Reconciliation Form: A form that helps you reconcile your account. See Reconcile.

    Recording a Transaction: The act of writing down a transaction in your check register. See Transaction.

    Statement: The documentation you get every month from your financial institution that list all of the activities in your account for the month.

    Transaction: When money goes into, or out of, your account. Can include deposits, withdrawals, payments, fees, ATM transactions or transfers.

iTalk Telephone Banking

  • The system’s default is Touch Tone. To activate Speech Recognition, press 2 after the greeting. You will be directed to the MAIN MENU. To access any account information, please have your Account Number and PIN ready.

    Menu Controls

    • Main Menu, 3*
    • Operator, 0
    • Go Back, *
    • Repeat, #
  • The system’s default is Touch Tone. To activate Speech Recognition, press 2 after the greeting.

    ( press or say the number with the options below to navigate the phone tree )

    1. Account Balance

      Access Account Balances for any of the following:

      • Checking Accounts
      • Savings Accounts
      • CD Accounts
      • Loan Accounts
    2. Account History
      1. Last 5 Transactions
      2. Deposits
      3. Withdrawals
      4. Check Number
      5. Amount
      6. Date
      7. ATM Transactions
    3. Transfer Funds or Make a Payment
      1. Transfer Funds Immediately
      2. Schedule a Funds Transfer
      3. Payments
      4. Hear Existing Scheduled Transfers
      5. Delete an Existing Transfer
    4. Stop Payment Activities
      1. Stop a Payment
      2. Stop Payment Inquiry
    5. Change Your Access Code
    6. Change Overdraft Options
    7. Locations & Hours
  • Your member number is the same as your account number. Enter your account number when prompted then WAIT for the prompt to enter your pin.

  • The Account Balance option provides both the current balance and available balance (that’s minus any holds). Go to MAIN MENU and press 1 for Account Balance.

  • During regular business hours, just press 0 at any point to reach our bank operator.

  • You can search for transactions by type, check number, amount/range, or date(s). To find out what has cleared your account, go to MAIN MENU, press 2 for Account History, then listen to the options.

  • You can change your PIN, but it must be a new number. You cannot re-use a PIN. To change your PIN, go to MAIN MENU and press 5 to Change Your Access Code. If you haven’t used iTalk before, you will be prompted to select a PIN.

Overdrafts

  • Our overdraft section provides information about our overdraft processes, fees, products and services to help you prevent unwanted overdraft expenses.

    Posting Transactions to Your Checking Account

    The bank posts the day’s debits and credits to your account Monday through Friday evenings, excluding bank holidays.

    For more information regarding the Bank’s posting order, please contact a Customer Service Representative.

    One final reminder…

    Overdrafts only occur if you spend more than what you have available in your account. Sometimes, because of the many convenient ways you can access your account, it is easy to lose track of your balance.

    For more information, please contact us!

    Since it is difficult to explain every situation in detail, we would be happy to provide you with additional information at your request. Simply call one of our friendly Customer Service Representatives at (573) 785-8461 or stop by any of our branches and speak with a bank associate.

    We are here to help you so please feel free to contact us about any questions you may have.

  • What is an Overdraft?

    An overdraft occurs when your account does not have enough money to cover, for example, a check that is presented, an ATM or debit card transaction or an online banking transaction. Overdrafts may also occur if you have authorized, for example, your insurance company or gym to automatically deduct payments from your account and do not remember to deduct these amounts from your account. Sometimes people do not remember to mark these payments in their check register.

    How do overdrafts happen?

    An overdraft happens, for example, when you…

    • Write a check
    • Withdraw money from an ATM
    • Make an automatic bill payment
    • Use your ATM/debit card to make a purchase

    …and you do not have enough money in your account, the bank has the choice to either pay or not pay the transaction.

    • If we pay the amount, you will be charged an overdraft fee of $25.
    • If we return your check or automatic payment without paying it, you will be charged an “NSF or non-sufficient funds” fee of $25.

    Sometimes the company or person to whom you wrote the check (store, utility company, etc.) may charge you a “returned check” fee in addition to the fee we may charge.


    Do you always authorize and pay overdrafts on my account?

    We authorize and pay overdrafts on checks and automatic bill payments at our discretion.

    Why don’t you authorize and pay overdrafts on my ATM or everyday debit card transactions?

    You may not have authorized us to pay these types of transactions. Please see the link below to our Opt-In/Opt-Out Form for more information about these types of transactions.

    Opt-In / Opt-Out Form for Overdraft Services

    Will you always authorize and pay my overdrafts by ATM or everyday debit card transactions if I give you permission by opting-in?

    We pay overdrafts at our discretion, so we cannot guarantee that we will always authorize and pay any type of transaction.

    Why would I want to give you permission (opt-in) to authorize and pay overdrafts for my ATM or everyday debit transactions?

    We understand that anyone can make a mistake with their checking account – like forgetting to record a payment or not remembering when a company takes an automatic payment that was set up previously. Also, suppose you really need gas for your car – but you go to the station and your card is denied because there isn’t enough money in your checking account. Or, you go to the grocery store and at the checkout your card is denied. By opting-in or giving us permission, these transactions may be authorized. We believe opting-in can save you potential embarrassment and inconvenience.

    Are there fees if you pay my overdraft?

    We charge you a $25 overdraft fee for each overdraft item we pay with a maximum charge of $150 per day charged.

    What is the best way to avoid overdraft or NSF fees?

    The best way to avoid overdraft and NSF fees is to manage your account so that you do not overdraw it.

    Here are some steps to help you:

    • Know how much money you have in your account by keeping your check register current.
    • Record all…
      • Checks when you write them
      • Automatic bill payments
      • ATM/Debit card transactions
    • Check your balance frequently—it takes some checks and payments a few days to clear. The following services are available 24/7 for your convenience:
      • Online Banking
      • Mobile Banking
      • iTalk Telephone Banking
    • Review your account statements each month.
    • Read or print Balancing Your Account to see helpful tips so you stay on track. You can also ask your branch office for a copy.

    Mistakes happen sometimes. If you do overdraw your account, deposit money into your account as soon as possible to cover the overdrawn amount plus any fees. This will help you avoid additional overdrafts and fees.

    Is there a way for me to save some money if I overdraw my account?

    In fact, yes there is! Below are the Overdraft Services we offer. Our Overdraft Service plans do not have annual fees; just a transfer fee that you only pay when you use the service. So, in case your funds are not readily available in your account, our Overdraft Service plans give you flexibility and save you from having to pay overdraft fees.

    Are there additional charges or restrictions for overdraft or insufficient items?

    Accounts will be charged the standard Overdraft fee of $25 for handling each overdraft created by check, ACH, Point-of-Sale, ATM withdrawal, in-person withdrawal, or other electronic item that is paid and $25 for items returned. An overdrawn balance must be brought positive within 35 days. We may not pay items under your overdraft privilege if you do not maintain your account in good standing by bringing your account to a positive balance within every thirty-five (35) day period for a minimum of 24 hours, if you default on any loan or other obligation to First Midwest Banks or if your account is subject to any legal or administrative order or levy.

  • You can ask us to link your deposit (checking) account to your savings, money market or another checking account. If you overdraw your checking account, we automatically transfer funds from the linked accounts to cover the shortage; assuming you have sufficient funds in the linked accounts. The Bank offers this service for a fee of $2.00.

    *First Midwest Bank does not charge a fee for you to use Mobile Banking. You must be enrolled for our free Online Banking to access Mobile Banking on your mobile phone. Your mobile phone provider may charge access fees or data usage fees to obtain web access. Message and data rates may apply. Check with your service carrier for more details on specific fees.

    **Per Federal regulation, there is a maximum of six (6) preauthorized or automatic transfers per cycle that can be made on a statement savings or money market account.

     

  • Overdraft Privilege Service will be discussed with you at account opening. You may be eligible at the time your account is opened for a $100 Overdraft Privilege. This Privilege amount enables the bank to pay any debits (up to $100) on your account that would cause your account to be overdrawn. An overdraft fee of $25 will be charged for each item paid. As always, the payment of overdrafts is at the bank’s discretion.

    • After 30 days of the account being opened, a review will be conducted by the bank. If the account is determined to be in good standing and the Overdraft Privilege Service is not being used excessively, the account may qualify for a higher “Privilege” amount of up to $500.
    • Following an overdraft, if your account is not brought to a positive balance within 30 days the bank will suspend your Overdraft Privilege.
    • If you have additional questions about the Overdraft Privilege Service, please call us at (573) 785-8461 or stop by any of our branches and speak with a Customer Service Representative.
  • You can also set alerts through Online Banking or Mobile Banking to notify you when your account balance drops below the amount you specify. That way, you can transfer or deposit money to avoid overdrawing your account.

Identity Protection

  • While First Midwest Bank has systems and policies in place to protect your financial information from unauthorized access and disclosure, most identity thieves obtain information through other means, including mail theft, telephone solicitations, and email scams that ask for personal information.

    First Midwest Bank will never ask for sensitive financial or personal information, such as account numbers, passwords and Social Security numbers in an email. Unsolicited “spoof” emails requesting such information are a typical ploy in “phishing” — fraudulent techniques used by online impostors to “fish” for, or lure you into supplying financial account credentials and personal information.

    While no one can ever be totally safe from identity theft, we want to make you aware of a few proactive, simple measures you can take that can help you from becoming a victim of identity theft.

  • Financial account credentials, passwords, Social Security numbers and other personal information are sought by thieves to commit identity theft, which can damage your credit and cost you countless hours and dollars in the effort to restore your good name.

    You can minimize your risk of identity theft by observing the following tips, courtesy of the Federal Trade Commission. Learn more about protecting yourself on the FTC’s website.

    1. Protect your Social Security number. Don’t carry your Social Security card in your wallet or write your Social Security number on a check. Give your Social Security number only when absolutely necessary, and ask to use other types of identifiers.
    2. Treat your trash and mail carefully. Always shred documents you discard that may contain sensitive financial or personal information, including credit offers you receive in the mail. To opt out of prescreened credit offers, call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688).
    3. Be on guard when using the Internet. Beware “spoof” emails and “phishing.”
    4. Select intricate passwords for log-in to financial and personal information online. Use at least eight characters, both uppercase and lowercase letters, one or more numerals and one or more symbols.
    5. Change your password often. Do not share it with others, and do not record it in an easy-to-find place.
    6. Verify sources before sharing information. Don’t give out personal information on the phone, through the mail, or on the Internet unless you’ve initiated the contact and are sure you know who you’re dealing with.
    7. Safeguard your purse and wallet. Carry only the identification information and the credit and debit cards that you’ll actually need when you go out.
    8. Store your personal information in secure locations.
    9. Review your credit reports at least once a year to check for errors and fraud.
    10. Pay attention to billing cycles. Follow up with creditors if bills do not arrive on time.

    Promptly and carefully review your account statements such as bank statements, credit card statements, as well as mobile phone and home telephone bills for unauthorized charges or activity.

  • Worms, viruses and spyware that appear on the Internet carry a variety of problems. Some have the capability to install software on an end user’s computer, seeking Internet banking or financial data with the intent of communicating the data back to the attacker.

    A financial institution or a service provider cannot prevent these items from being sent out and infecting people’s computers. What we can do is ensure that our systems are virus-free, properly patched and that our users are knowledgeable of the risks.

    The following are tips to help protect your computer and information:

    1. Prevent the unauthorized use of your computer by requiring a log-in password at start-up. To create a strong password, use at least eight characters, both uppercase and lowercase letters, one or more numerals and one or more symbols.
    2. Change your password often. Do not share it with others, and do not record it in an easy-to-find place.
    3. Log off or lock your computer if you must step away from it while working, and log off, lock or shut down at the end of a work session or end of the day.
    4. Do not leave your laptop or notebook computer where it can be easily removed.
    5. Ensure that you have a firewall, system security software, anti-virus software, and spyware-detection software installed on your computer — and keep it up-to-date.
    6. Use only software from reliable vendors. Shareware, freeware and trial-use programs may install unwanted adware or spyware on your computer.
    7. Wi-Fi access should be secured with strong password encryption.
  • Be wary of emails from senders you don’t know – do not open attachments in an unsolicited email. When in doubt, delete the mail without opening it.

    If you receive an email that warns you with little or no notice that your financial account will be shut down unless you confirm your financial or personal information, do not respond to or comply with the request.


    Be aware that email “spoofing” — the forgery of an email header so that the message appears to come from someone other than the actual source — is an often-used technique of online impostors. To be certain of an email’s authenticity, contact the sender using a telephone number or web address you know to be genuine.


    You may also forward suspicious e-mail to the Federal Trade Commission at spam@uce.gov.

  • “Phishing” is a fraudulent technique used by online impostors to “fish” for, or lure you into supplying your financial account credentials or personal information.

    Be suspicious of unsolicited emails from a “business” that asks for your password, Social Security number, or highly sensitive information. Legitimate businesses do not ask for this type of information over the Internet. Contact the business directly to verify the authenticity of the email. Do not reply to or click on any links or pictures in unsolicited emails, especially those asking for personal information.

    Typically, a phishing scam begins with the delivery of an unsolicited “spoof” e-mail message claiming to be from a bank or online merchant, with a subject line such as “Important Security Issue,” “Account Verification Required” or “Update Account.” The message directs you to a web page and asks you to enter your bank account or credit card account number, account password, Social Security number or other information to verify your identity. However, the web page is not actually associated with the bank or online merchant — it’s on a counterfeit replica site.

  • Victims of identity theft often don’t learn of the theft until after the fact. By that time, substantial damage may have been done and the work necessary to repair the damage done to your financial reputation and credit rating can take years and cost thousands of dollars.
    If you suspect that someone has been using your personal information:

    • Notify law enforcement immediately.
    • Call us at (573) 785-8461 to block all lost or stolen cards, checks and account information.
    • Contact the fraud departments of the three major credit bureaus.
    • Contact the creditors of any accounts that have been misused.

    If it is after hours or the weekend, please call 1-800-383-8000.

  • You are allowed one free credit report every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. You may request this report through the Annual Credit Report website: www.AnnualCreditReport.com

    Note: By notifying one agency of fraudulent activity, you will notify all three.

    Equifax
    Request a credit report: (800) 685-1111 Option 4
    Reporting Fraud: (800) 525-6285
    Website: http://www.equifax.com

    Experian
    Request a credit report: (888) 397-3742
    Reporting Fraud: (888) 397-3742
    Website: http://www.experian.com

    TransUnion Corporation
    Request a credit Report: (800) 916-8800
    Reporting Fraud: (800) 680-7289
    Website: http://www.transunion.com

  • Federal Trade Commission
    The Federal Trade Commission website has information for consumers and businesses on how to Deter, Detect, and Defend against identity theft. The website also includes details on how an active duty military person can place an “Active Duty Alert” on their credit report and how you may file an identity theft complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.
    Visit their website: http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft/

    Anti-Phishing Working Group
    You can find consumer advice on how to avoid phishing scams, what to do if you have given out your personal financial information, how to report phishing and also browse the phishing archives.
    Visit their website: http://www.Antiphishing.org

    FBI
    The Federal Bureau of Investigations website has many features which include the “Be Crime Smart” section on e-scams, warnings, reporting internet crime, common fraud schemes and other tips and suggestions.
    Visit their website: http://www.fbi.gov

    Internet Identity Theft and Fraud
    Through a joint effort from the IRS, the Office of Justice Programs and Information Assurance Support Environment this site is available. The following site gives information about avoiding scams, shopping smart online and through phone applications, protecting kids online, and securing your personal computer.
    Visit their website: www.onguardonline.gov/

    How to Spot a Fake Check
    The National Consumers League has the following site dedicated to helping consumers spot fake checks. This is a great resource for those who are just learning about checks as well as those who have been writing checks for years.
    Visit their website: www.fakechecks.org

Online Banking Security

  • Keeping financial information secure and confidential within First Midwest Online Banking is one of our most important responsibilities. Whenever personal information is requested or displayed on our website we use encryption technology, such as Secure Socket Layer (SSL), to prevent unauthorized access to data. Your online banking experience and the security of your personal and financial information are very important to us, and we are committed to safe and secure online banking and to provide you with peace of mind when you access your account information. 

  • For your convenience, we offer the ability to log into online banking from our home page. While on the home page, you may notice that the web address (URL) begins with the prefix “https,” and a familiar padlock symbol appears in your Web browser — both are indicators that the page is secure.

  • We use the latest technology to ensure the security and confidentiality of your information. Advancements in security technology occur frequently, and we continually evaluate our security environment to ensure that it provides the highest level of privacy and safety for our customers. The following outlines the steps we take to keep your information secure.

  • Enhanced security is provided for our First Midwest Online Banking customers by requiring a security image that verifies your identity in two ways. Every time you log in to online banking, the bank identifies you, and it lets you identify the bank using a private image and pass phrase that is unique to each individual online banking user. This level of security is used for routine online banking services such as balance inquiries and transfers.

  • Enhanced security is provided for our First Midwest Online Banking customers by requiring a security image that verifies your identity in two ways. Every time you log in to online banking, the bank identifies you, and it lets you identify the bank using a private image and pass phrase that is unique to each individual online banking user. This level of security is used for routine online banking services such as balance inquiries and transfers.

  • To further protect you, a timeout feature is often used. This feature will automatically log you out of your current financial service session after an extended period of inactivity on our site.

  • First Midwest Online Banking also requires the use of secure browsers to protect you while you access our online financial services. More specifically, the personal and account information that flow back and forth between your PC and First Midwest must be encrypted while in transit – secure browsers are how we achieve this level of protection. Encryption is the process of scrambling information (typically for data transmission) so that it can only be reassembled in its original clear text format by someone who has the correct encryption key to do so. Likewise, when we send personal or account information to you, this technology encrypts it, which then only you can decrypt.

  • Authentication ensures that you, the legitimate user is communicating with us and not a fraudster who does not have authority to access your online accounts.

  • SSL stands for “Secure Socket Layer.” This technology allows users to establish sessions with secure Internet sites, meaning they have minimal risk of external violation. Once inside the online banking site, our use of SSL technology keeps you and your account information secure. Only browsers supporting the SSL security protocol with 128-bit encryption can be used to log on to our system.

  • Encryption turns words and phrases into coded language. All of your online activities during an online banking session become a string of unrecognizable numbers before entering the Internet. We employ the strongest forms of cryptography that are commercially available for use over the Internet, so your account information will read as gibberish to everyone but you and our financial institution.

  • We also employ background monitoring of your account activity, if the system detects an unusual pattern with your login, you will be prompted to answer one of your Challenge Questions. You must answer this question correctly before being allowed to continue logging in.

  • Challenge Questions are questions for which you previously supplied answers to confirm your identity and prevent fraud, should unusual activity on your account be identified.

  • Regulation E, which implements the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, protects individual consumers engaging in electronic funds transfers. Regulation E sets forth basic rights, liabilities, and responsibilities of EFT consumers of financial institutions that offer these services.

    Under these consumer protections, you can recover Internet banking losses according to the time frame you detect and report them to the bank. A consumer’s liability for an unauthorized electronic fund transfer(s) is as follows: 

    1. If the consumer notifies the Bank within two business days after learning of the loss or theft of the access device, the consumer’s liability shall not exceed the lesser of $50 or the amount of unauthorized transfer(s) that occur before notice to the Bank.
    2. If the consumer fails to notify the Bank within two business days after learning of the loss or theft of the access device, the consumer’s liability shall not exceed the lesser of $500 or the sum of:
      1. $50 or the amount of unauthorized transfers that occur within the two business days, whichever is less; and
      2. The amount of unauthorized transfers that occur after the close of two business days and before notice to the Bank.
    3. A consumer must report an unauthorized electronic fund transfer that appears on a periodic statement within 60 days of the Bank’s transmittal of the statement to avoid liability for subsequent transfers. If the consumer fails to do so, the consumer’s liability shall not exceed the amount of the unauthorized transfers that occur after the close of the 60 days and before notice to the Bank.

    Please contact a customer service representative at your local branch for more details.

  • First Midwest Bank strives to provide the most secure online banking experience for your business. The bank has implemented several security measures to keep your online banking environment safe and secure.

    First Midwest Bank joins the FFIEC and the other financial regulatory agencies in urging business account holders to conduct an internal assessment of control in their business to ensure the highest level of security for online business transactions. 

    The Regulation E protections listed above apply only to consumers and consumer accounts.

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First Midwest Bank does not provide, and is not responsible for, the product, service, or overall website content available at a third-party website. Our privacy policies do not apply to linked websites. Please consult the privacy disclosures concerning any other website you may use.

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