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Protect Yourself Online

How to Avoid Fake Websites

At Central Willamette, we know you work hard for your money. It’s what lets you enjoy that morning cup of coffee, plan your dream vacation, or finally buy that new furniture set you’ve been eyeing. That’s why your security is our top priority. 

Recently, cybercriminals have been trying to impersonate financial institutions online. They create websites that might look just like the sites you know and trust but are designed to trick you into giving them your personal information. 

How do these scams work?

The skills of cybercriminals are growing, and their fake websites can look convincing. They may even manipulate Google search engine results to trick you into clicking on their malicious link. Once on the fake site, scammers often use scare tactics. They might display fake alerts about account issues, login failures, or urgent messages requiring immediate action. These messages often direct you to call a fake helpline number, where a scammer will try to obtain your personal information.

Here’s how to stay scam-free:

  • Bookmark our official website: Instead of relying on search engines, bookmark the real Central Willamette website ( so you can access it with a click. That way, you’ll always know you’re going to the right place. 

  • Be a detective: Fake websites can seem a little off, whether that is due to grammar, spelling, or functionality. If something feels off, trust your gut!

  • Beware of urgency: Phishing scams often rely on scare tactics. Be suspicious of websites displaying alerts about account issues or urgent messages requiring immediate attention.

By following these tips and remaining vigilant, you can keep yourself safe from online scams. Check out our online security center for more about this and other scams and fraud. 

If you have questions please text or call: (541) 928-4536visit a branch, or send us a message today!