Online Banking and Internet Security - Frequently Asked Questions

The security of your personal information is important to us. Below are common questions we receive related to the security of Online Banking and Internet usage.  

Please review the information below and contact us if you have other questions or need assistance.

Does Online Banking work with all browsers?

Because of the high security standard imposed Online Banking may not work with all browsers. The Bank requires that your browser support 128-bit encryption in order to access the online banking system. Of the browsers that offer 128-bit encryption, the following browsers are those approved for use with online banking:

For Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows NT 4.0:
Netscape Communicator 4.5 or higher with 128-bit encryption
Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0 or higher with 128-bit encryption

For Macintosh®:
Netscape Communicator® 4.5 or higher with 128-bit encryption
Microsoft Internet Explorer® 4.0 or higher with 128-bit encryption

Netscape Comunicator and Netscape Navigator are trademarks of Netscape Communications Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. Microsoft and Windows are either trademarks or registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. Macintosh is a registered trademark of the Apple Corporation.

If you do not have one of these browsers, we strongly recommend that you upgrade your browser.

How do I know I have the right browser?

We’ll tell you if you do not have the right browser when you begin to Sign Up or Log On to our Online Banking system. If you are able to access online banking, you have the right browser.

How do I know when my information is encrypted?

Your browser will display a closed lock or completed picture of a key on the bottom of your screen whenever your information is encrypted. Your address bar will also turn green and you will be able to see the name of the certificate in the top of your browser.

I don’t have the right browser. How can I upgrade my browser?

Both Microsoft and Netscape have browsers that meet First National’s 128-bit encryption requirements. You can upgrade your browser online. Currently, the most recent versions of Netscape Communicator and Microsoft Internet Explorer are available for free download via the Internet.

Is my on-line communication with the Bank secure?

Yes. Security is one of the most important issues we faced in making this service available to our customers. We have taken strong measures to ensure that your information remains confidential. The first step is the use of a secure browser. Certain browsers and computers have the ability to communicate securely by scrambling information as it passes across the Internet. The method of communication is called SSL, or Secure Socket Layer. We require the use of a 128-bit encryption secure browser before a connection can be made to the transaction system. After you reach us using the secure browser, we take steps to make sure your information remains secure and confidential. Your information passes through a “firewall,” which is a computer specifically designed to keep out unauthorized users. We ask that you do not email us your account information. We will never ask you for your passwords for Online Banking. Please do not hesitate in asking us if you can call us back to ensure you are talking to the bank.

What about e-mail?

Standard e-mail is NOT secure. E-mail does not travel over the Internet through the same secure connections as secure forms. You should not use e-mail to send sensitive information, such as financial data, credit card numbers, or personal information. If you need to send sensitive information separate from the secure forms, please mail it to First National Bank of Gilmer, P.O. Box 520, Gilmer, Texas 75644; fax it to us at 903-843-4129; or call us at 903-843-4130.

What are cookies and how are they used for Online Banking?

A cookie is information sent from a web site to a visitor’s computer while he or she is visiting the site. Our online banking system requires that your browser accept per-session cookies. Per-session cookies are frequently used by Active Server Pages (ASP) running on Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS). These cookies store session information as the user navigates to multiple ASP pages in a Website. In fact, virtually any Website using ASPs requires session cookies. If sites didn’t use session cookies, a “session” could not exist. The net result would be that a user would have to “log in” on every page (i.e. enter user code and password on every page).

Per-session cookies are cached (in memory) only while you are visiting the online banking system. They are deleted from the cache when you close the browser. These cookies only contain information that identifies a session that has been established by the online banking system. The session cookie does not contain any customer information. Again, these cookies are removed from your computer when you log off or have not accessed your account information after a period of inactivity (usually 10 minutes). If your browser does not accept cookies, refer to your browser manual or help text to assist you in changing the settings on your browser.

What does the Bank do with my information?

Your privacy is very important to us, as is safeguarding your information. Please click here to review our Privacy Notice to find out how we protect your interests.

What is encryption and how is it used to protect my information?

Encryption is the transformation of data into an unreadable form, and decryption is the reversal of that process. Both encryption and decryption require the use of a special code, usually referred to as a key. The security level of the key is dependent on the browser itself, and whether or not the browser is using 40-bit or 128-bit encryption. The encryption of data provides a strong degree of protection against tampering while data is moving through the Internet. When you login to internet banking, you will notice that your address bar is in green. This means that you are working SSL and the certificate is valid for the website.

What is JavaScript and how is it used for Online Banking?

JavaScript is a programming language the Bank uses to edit and perform other functions within your browser rather than waiting for information to be sent to a Bank server to process. Our online banking uses JavaScript to edit some of the information that you enter so that we can be sure it is correct before processing it. We also use JavaScript to present information on your browser to assist you in obtaining more information about features and in navigating through the online banking system. If your browser does not have scripting enabled, refer to your browser manual or help text to assist you in changing the settings on your browser.

If you are attempting to log on from work, please note that not all businesses make their computer systems available to employees to perform private functions. Please check with your employer to determine whether such access is permitted from your workplace. Also, some corporate networks may not allow the use of cookies or JavaScript, which are required for online banking access. You will need to contact the System Administrator or help desk that supports your computer for assistance.

What is the difference between 40-bit and 128-bit encryption?

Because encryption works by transforming your information into an unreadable format using a key, the longer the key, the harder it is to break. The 128-bit encryption technology uses a key that is many times longer than 40-bit technology. Comparing 128-bit security with 40-bit security is like comparing a combination lock that requires a hundred numbers to open to a combination lock that requires only three numbers to open.

Why it is important to select “Exit” when I finish using online banking or when I walk away from my computer?

Once you have logged on to our online banking system, you have begun an “active session.” If you walk away during the course of an active session, someone else can use your computer to perform transactions involving your accounts. It is similar to walking away from an ATM while your card is still in the machine. For your security, your online banking will automatically end your active session if there is no activity on your computer for about 10 minutes. However, to eliminate any exposure, it is always better for you to end the active session by selecting “Exit.”
Related Resources
Online Banking FAQ
Mobile Banking
Mobile Deposit
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