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Fraud Prevention

With ESL, get peace of mind knowing your account, payments, and purchases are safe and secure. ESL and our partners are committed to protecting you. Learn more about how ESL protects you and how you can help.

Talk with us about any fraud questions or concerns.

Talk With the Fraud Team Now
  • Report Fraud

    If you are worried your information has been compromised, contact us now. The sooner we know, the sooner we can help you.

    Types of Information that can be Compromised:
    • Your physical card was lost or stolen.
    • Credit card or debit card account numbers, expiration dates, or security codes.
    • Personally identifiable information like your full Social Security Number or Tax ID Number.
    • ESL online banking or account login information such as your user name or password.
    Ways to Contact the ESL Fraud Team:

    Monday-Saturday: 7:30 a.m.-9 p.m. ET
    Sunday and Holidays: 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m. ET

    1. Call us at 585.336.1140 or 888.353.9920:
      • We encourage you to talk with an ESL Representative.​ Conversations about fraud can be complex.​
      • To contact us after-hours, please call 800.754.4128.
    2. Chat with Us:
      • Chat securely with an ESL Fraud Representative​.
    1. Email Us at
      • We strongly encourage you to contact us right away if you think your ESL account is at risk.
      • Please include the following in your email:
        • Information on the fraudulent transactions.
        • The account holder's name, ZIP code, and phone number so we can easily identify you.

    A member of the ESL Fraud Prevention Department will contact you within one business day (excluding weekends and holidays) to obtain details via a telephone conversation.

    Identifying Fraud:

    If you think you've received a fraudulent email but haven't acted on it:

    • If the email looks like it was from ESL or the NCUA (National Credit Union Administration) – Please forward the email to us at
    • If the email appears to be from someone other than ESL or the NCUA (e.g., eBay or another financial institution) – You can report it to the "Anti-Phishing Working Group," a volunteer organization committed to wiping out Internet scams and fraud. Visit the website for instructions.
    Are You a Victim of Identify Theft?

    Refer to our Identity Theft resource to learn how to recover from and prevent future theft.

  • Types of Fraud

    The best way to help prevent fraud is to make sure you know what threats you're facing.

    ESL will NEVER ask you to confirm personal information using a link in an email or a text message. When you receive a legitimate email from ESL, we will always advise you to access our website and online banking by using your own bookmarks or favorites, or by typing our URL before signing in to online banking. Remember: when in doubt ... type it out!

    Here are a few types of fraud to keep in mind as you make transactions online:

    This involves someone getting your card account number, expiration date, security code, or PIN. There is a lot in the news about hackers getting this information from retailers. This can also occur when:

    • Your card is out of your hands.
    • You sell items online.
    • You answer a phishing email.
    • Your computer, phone, or tablet are not secure.
    • Simply defined, ACH fraud is any unauthorized funds transfer that occurs in a bank account.  All the fraudster needs is an account number and a bank routing number to execute the fraud.
    • Identity theft (ID theft) is a crime where personal information is taken and used fraudulently. The most invasive ID theft is when a criminal gains access to your Social Security Number (SSN). With your SSN and a few pieces of information, they can acquire debt in your name. The most common ID thefts happen when a criminal gains access to a credit card number or bank account number and makes unauthorized purchases or withdrawals.
    • It's a funny name, but being a victim of a "phishing" attack (and identity theft) is no laughing matter. Phishing scams attempt to get personal information by urging you to send your information as a response to an email that appears to come from a legitimate source. For example, some "phishers" send an email saying it’s from your bank or credit union. The email might tell them you've unsuccessfully signed in to an online banking service and asks you to try again, using a link in the email. The link sends you to a fraudulent site where identity theft could occur.
  • How ESL Protects You

    ESL works hard to protect you … your information, your accounts, your cards, and more. Here is glimpse of what we do to protect you:

    Online and Mobile Banking Security

    For ESL, providing a safe, secure online and mobile banking experience for our members has always been mandatory, never an option. That's why we protect members' online and mobile banking activities with the most current encryption methods using not only username and passwords but also one-time secure codes as a text, phone call, or email.

    Want more information about security and online banking? Learn about:

    ESL Card and Account Monitoring

    ESL monitors all accounts for suspicious activity 24 hours a day/7 days a week.

    • Suspicious Transactions – If we see a suspicious transaction, we will call you to confirm if that activity is legitimate.
    • Tip – If you will be traveling, contact us before you leave to avoid any delays using your card.
    • Significant Threat – We may block and reissue a card if a threat is significant. We will notify you immediately to work through payment alternatives until your new card arrives.
    Card Security – Enjoy a Safe and Secure Way to Pay

    You can shop with confidence online and anywhere else when you use your ESL Visa® Check Card and Credit Card. Plus, your card is safer than carrying cash. That’s because ESL and Visa work 24/7 to prevent, detect, and resolve fraud.

    • Fraud Prevention Tools – The three-digit security code on the back of your card provides Internet and phone security by helping verify that you’re in possession of your card.
    • Real-Time Fraud Detection – Using best-in-class solutions for Real-Time Fraud Monitoring, we screen your account 24/7 to detect suspicious card activity outside your normal pattern.
    • We’ll Fix It:
      The Visa Zero Liability Policy1 means you don’t pay for unauthorized use of your credit or debit card.
      Access to Identity Theft Assistance helps you regain control of your account if you suspect you’ve been a victim of card fraud.

    Your ESL Visa Check Card and Credit Card are a Safe Way to Pay

    To learn more, visit

  • Preventing Fraud

    Simple Ways to Protect Yourself from Visa

    There are some simple steps you can take to reduce or minimize the risk of becoming a victim of identity theft or card fraud.


    Delete spam emails that ask for personal information, and keep your anti-virus and anti-spyware software up-to-date. Shop online only with secure web pages (check the bottom of your browser for an image of a lock or look for “https” in the address bar). Never send credit or debit card numbers, Social Security Numbers, and other personal information via email. 

    Tear up or shred credit card statements; ATM, credit, or debit card receipts; bank deposit receipts; loan solicitations; and other documents that contain personal financial information.

    Empty your mailbox quickly and get a mailbox lock. When mailing bill payments and checks, consider dropping them off at the post office or a secure mailbox.

    Your Social Security Number is a major target for identity thieves because it can give them access to your credit report and bank accounts. Never carry your card with you. Instead, memorize your number and keep the card in a secure place at home or in a safe deposit box. Never write or print your Social Security Number on checks. You may also ask your employer to remove your Social Security Number from your paycheck stubs.

    At least once a year, obtain and review your credit report for suspicious activity. You can request a free copy of your report at or by contacting any one of the three major credit reporting agencies. Learn how in our Building Credit resource.

    Always be on the defensive with your financial information. Never give out personal information to telemarketers or respond to emails from someone claiming to represent your bank, credit card company, a government agency, a charity, or other organization. If you think the request is legitimate, contact the company directly to confirm their claims.

    Let us know before you go:

    • Contact ESL prior to travel at 585.336.1000 or use chat banking.
    • Verify we have your correct phone number and email address for contact.
    • Use your PIN for debit card transactions, if possible.
    • Carry ESL phone numbers with you when you travel:
      • General: 585.336.1000 or 800.848.2265
      • Fraud Department: 585.336.1140 or 888.353.9920

    In general, be on the alert for opportunities that may attract thieves:

    • Receipts – Do not leave credit card receipts on the table at restaurants; sign them and hand them directly back to the server. Keep your copy of all receipts.
    • Wallets – Stolen wallets frequently lead to identity theft, so instead of carrying your wallet in your pocket or having it easily accessible in your bag, use travel pouches that are worn inside your shirt.
    • Checks – Leave checkbooks at home in a locked safe or drawer. Checking account takeover is one of the hardest types of financial fraud to clear up.
    • Camera phones – That tourist with a camera phone may actually be taking a shot of your credit card or driver’s license. Keep important personal information out of view from others.
    • Mail – Put your mail on postal hold whenever you travel, and arrange for mail to only be picked up by you at the post office when you return.
    • Hotels – Lock up all valuables in room or hotel safes while you are out, including laptops, passports, and other documents that contain your personal information. Do not leave these items with a hotel employee to transport or hold – carry them yourself.
    • Airplanes – Do not put any items that contain your Social Security Number, card numbers, or financial institution account numbers in checked luggage. Always carry them with you.

Protect Yourself from Identity Theft

"Never give personal information to someone you don't know over the phone, via email, or a text. Contact your financial institution directly to verify the validity of the request."

Credit Counseling Services of Rochester (CCCS)