At Southwest Georgia Farm Credit, we recognize your expectation of privacy and confidentiality of personal financial information when seeking the assistance of outside professionals to obtain credit. We have taken great care in establishing and implementing policies and procedures and have committed to an ongoing review of those policies and procedures to protect your personal and financial information.
Your privacy is a top priority in all aspects of our business. Our employees are informed of their responsibility to protect your confidential information and are governed by strict standards of conduct, which prohibit unauthorized use of your information. Security procedures and internal controls are also in place to protect your privacy.
Information collected and stored automatically
You can browse the Southwest Georgia Farm Credit website without telling us who you are or revealing your personally identifying information. However, we do collect usage information automatically from all visitors to our website. This information does not identify you personally. We automatically collect and store only the following information about your visit:
- Your internet protocol (IP) address
- The URL address of the web pages from which you navigated to our website, and to which you navigate away from our website, as well as search terms you may have used to find our website
- The type of browser and operating system used to access our site
- The date and time of your visit
- The pages you visit
Information collected from emails and web forms
We collect information you provide directly to us by completing a form or submitting an email through our website. It may be seen and used by Farm Credit employees, our Farm Credit affiliates, and third-party suppliers and service providers, as discussed in the next two sections. We do not provide such information to non-affiliated third parties. If you are not comfortable providing the requested information via email or web forms, please contact us by calling 1-866-304-FARM (3276), or by writing to us at 305 Colquitt Highway, Bainbridge, GA 39817.
How we use your information
Farm Credit limits the use and collection of all information to that which is necessary to maintain and administer financial services, provide excellent service and offer new products and services that may be of benefit to you. In particular, we may use information that you provide to us or that we collect automatically for the following purposes:
- To administer, operate, and improve our website and the products and services we offer.
- To respond to an email, inquiry, or request sent by you.
- To evaluate your credit status if you have applied for a loan, or to verify or complete a transaction with you.
- To verify the existence and condition of a customer account for a credit bureau or reporting agency, or for the confidential use of any Farm Credit institution in contemplation of an extension of credit or the collection of loans.
- In response to a request from a regulator, who may review loan files during examinations or audits of Southwest Georgia Farm Credit or the Farm Credit System.
- To third parties seeking government guarantees, loan syndications, participations, and the like, or when loans are being sold on the secondary market.
- To communicate with you, and to provide you with information you request or that we think may be of interest to you. You may opt out of such communications at any time by following the instructions in each communication.
- To prevent fraud and to ensure the safety and security of our website.
- Otherwise as required or permitted by FCA regulations.
We may use third party suppliers and/or service providers to facilitate our services. For example, we may outsource one or more aspects of our website to a supplier or service provider who performs services according to our requirements. In all cases, we restrict how these suppliers or service providers may access, use, or disclose your information. In general, we only permit these suppliers or service providers to retain your information if doing so is part of the service they perform. For example, to run a credit check or store data in the cloud. We do not permit these suppliers or service providers to disclose or sell your information to third parties.
Federal or State law or regulations may require us to disclose confidential information in certain situations. Such situations include requests from law enforcement agencies (including requests from agencies or departments of the United States government for investigative or law enforcement purposes), or criminal or civil legal proceedings. In other limited circumstances, including requests from private individuals, we may be required by law to disclose information you submit to us. We reserve the right to disclose any information we deem necessary to comply with any applicable law, regulation, legal process, or governmental request, including personally identifiable information.
Security, intrusion and detection
For website security purposes and to ensure that this site remains available to all users, traffic on the site is monitored to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or cause damage. Unauthorized attempts to upload or change information on or to this website are strictly prohibited, and may be punishable under the law.
We are not responsible for the content or accuracy of any linked site, nor are we responsible for any loss or damage of any sort resulting from the use of a link on any linked websites. We are not liable for any failure of products or services advertised or provided on these linked sites. We offer these links on an “as is” basis.
This website is not directed at children under the age of 13, and we will not knowingly collect, use, or disclose any personally identifiable information from children under the age of 13. If you have reason to believe that a child under the age of 13 has provided personal information to us, please contact us and we will endeavor to delete that information from our databases.
Guidance for our customers against e-mail and internet-related fraudulent schemes
E-mail and internet-related fraudulent schemes, such as “phishing,” are being perpetrated with increasing frequency, creativity, and intensity. Phishing involves the use of seemingly legitimate e-mail messages and websites to deceive consumers into disclosing sensitive information, such as bank or loan account information, Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, passwords, and personal identification numbers (PINs). The perpetrator of the fraudulent e-mail message may use various means to convince the recipient that the message is legitimate and from a trusted source with which the recipient has an established business relationship. Techniques such as a false “from” address or the use of seemingly legitimate company logos, weblinks and graphics may be used to mislead e-mail recipients.
In most phishing schemes, the fraudulent e-mail message will request that recipients “update” or “validate” their financial or personal information in order to maintain their accounts, and direct them to a fraudulent website that may look very similar to the website of the legitimate business. These websites may include copied or “spoofed” pages from legitimate websites to further trick consumers into thinking they are responding to a bona fide request. Some consumers will mistakenly submit financial and personal information to the perpetrator who will use it to gain access to financial records or accounts, commit identity theft or engage in other illegal acts.
You should promptly report suspicious activity or e-mail communications to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Send the actual e-mail you received to email@example.com. If you believe you’ve been scammed, file your complaint at ftc.gov, then visit the FTC’s Identity Theft website ftc.gov/idtheft to learn how to minimize your risk of damage from identity theft.
If you receive a suspicious message that appears to be coming from us, or discover a potentially phony Southwest Georgia Farm Credit website, please let us know by calling (866) 304-3276, or by sending e-mail to LNogowski@SWGAFarmCredit.com so that we may take appropriate action.
Ways we are working to protect your information from fraud and identity theft
- We will never send e-mail messages that request confidential information, such as account numbers, passwords, or PINs
- We will work to notify internet service providers, domain name-issuing companies, and law enforcement to shut down fraudulent websites and other internet resources that may be used to facilitate phishing or other e-mail and internet-related fraudulent schemes directed towards our customers
- We maintain suspicious activity monitoring and employ additional identity verification controls
- We will offer our customers assistance when fraud is detected in connection with customer accounts
- As appropriate, we will notify the proper authorities when e-mail and Internet-related fraudulent schemes are detected
Additional tips in protecting yourself from fraud and identity theft
The safest approach is to immediately delete e-mail from unknown sources, before opening the e-mail.
Avoid clicking on any links in unsolicited e-mail, particularly e-mails that ask (either directly or by pointing to a website) for personal, financial, or identity information. Instead, directly type the website destination into your browser or use a trusted bookmark to verify the site or to log into your account directly.
Always access our website by using a trusted bookmark of our site or by directly typing our website address into your browser. Check to ensure you have typed the address correctly before providing personal information on the site.
When using Digital Banking, check to ensure that the padlock icon appears in your browser’s status bar. It indicates that your information is secure during transmission.
When you click on the Norton Secured logo on our Digital Banking log-in page, it should take you to a site indicating that “online.farmcredit.net” is a secure site and should display the following information:
Site Name: ONLINE.FARMCREDIT.NET
Valid (check to ensure the validity period (e.g., “May 24, 2018 to Jun 16, 2019”) is current)
AgFirst Farm Credit Bank
Columbia, South Carolina, US
If you receive an e-mail that warns you, with little or no notice, that an account of yours will be shut down unless you reconfirm your billing information, do not reply or click on the link in the e-mail. Instead, contact the company cited in the e-mail using a telephone number or website address you know to be genuine.
You may also wish to contact your Internet Service Provider for support in blocking e-mails or subscribing to a “spam” or junk e-mail filter they may offer.
Ensure your home computer has adequate anti-virus software and remember to update it frequently.