The latest news and information from CommStar Credit Union.
COMMUNITY STAR CREDIT UNION OFFERING $40,000 IN GRANTS FOR DOWNTOWN ELYRIA BUSINESSES
May 27, 2022:
CommStar Credit Union is excited to announce a grant program designated for business operating in or planning to open in the Downtown Elyria area. The credit union is offering up to $40,000 in total grant money.
The grant dollars from CommStar’s Elyria Storefront Revival Grant are intended to help revitalize Downtown Elyria area one business at a time. Grant applications are open to business owners moving into the Downtown Elyria area, or who are currently operating Downtown who need assistance with funding for their business, with a specific focus on financial hardship and funding gaps. Grant funds were secured by CommStar as part of the National Credit Union Association’s (NCUA) Community Development Revolving Loan Grant Fund.
CommStar worked with city officials, including the Mayor and the Director of Economic Transformation & Business Services, to work out the details of the grant program a way that would support the city’s economic development initiatives.
Click here to download an application.
Deadline to apply is 12:00 pm EST on Friday, June 10, 2022. Submit application one of the following ways:
Mail: CommStar Credit Union
c/o Grant Committee
832 Cleveland Street
Elyria, OH 44035
Erin Beese Haertling, Director of Member Experience
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Mobile Payment Apps: Avoiding Scams and Fraudsters in Cash App
We have seen an increase in the amount of reports of scams and fraud in mobile payment apps, like Cash App. To avoid falling victim to a scam or fraudster, follow these best practices:
- Do not give your mobile payment app account information to anyone
- Do not share your bank account, debit card, or credit card information
- Never send funds to someone you do not know
- Do not pay a “prize fee” or “prize tax” to claim a contest prize or giveaway item, especially if you did not enter a contest or giveaway
- Your financial institution will never contact you to request information such as your account number, debit card number, or personal information
- Cash App does not have live customer support, and only offers support through email. Be wary of imposter websites offering support for mobile payment apps
- Remember that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is
Our fraud team at CommStar can only help with cases of unauthorized use of your debit card. Refunds for scams or missing goods must be disputed with the service provider.
Below is some information from the Federal Trade Commission on mobile payment app scams:
How to Avoid Sending Money to a Scammer
For years, scammers have been making up all kinds of stories to trick people into sending them money. They may lie to you and say
- you won a prize or a sweepstakes and need to pay some fees to collect it
- a loved one is in trouble and they need you to send money
- you owe taxes to the IRS
- they’re from tech support and need money to fix a problem with your computer
- they’re someone who is romantically interested in you and needs some money
Scammers want you to pay in a way that’s quick and makes it hard for you to get your money back. That’s why they’ll tell you to wire money or pay them with reload cards or gift cards.
Scammers may also tell you to send money through a mobile payment app. If you get an unexpected email or text message that asks you to send money, don’t click on any links. Log in to the app to see if you have any requests for money. If you don’t, the email or text is probably a phishing scam.
What to Do If You Sent Money to a Scammer
If you sent money to a scammer, report the scam to the mobile payment app and ask them to reverse the transaction right away.
Then, report it to the Federal Trade Commission. When you report a scam, the FTC can use the information to build cases against scammers.
For more information, or to report a scam, visit the FTC’s website here.
COVID-19 Pandemic Relief Grant Funds Available for Eligible Members
CommStar Credit Union is excited to announce a new financial relief grant available for our members who are unable to make their loan payments due do COVID-19 pandemic-related hardships. CommStar received funding for this program through the Ohio Credit Union Foundation, in addition to funds contributed by the credit union. The purpose of this grant is to provide financial relief to eligible CommStar Credit Union members by providing one monthly loan payment to members facing financial hardship as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic at the time of application. Excludes Fannie Mae and business loans. Not sure if you’re eligible? Please contact Erin Beese at firstname.lastname@example.org or 440-365-7342 ext. 2413 to learn more.
Applications must be submitted by 12:00 pm EST on Saturday, June 13, 2020.
Update: Application submission period has ended.
Don’t Fall Victim to Phishing Scam Attempts
What is Phishing?
Phishing is an attempt to deceive you into thinking a business you are associated with is requesting information from you. These requests for personal information may look like simple, innocent, legitimate requests, but are not. These scams request you to reply to an email, respond to something by phone, follow a link to a web site, or even most recently, respond to a text message. Phishing e-mails are commonly disguised as messages from utility providers, financial institutions, or even an old e-mail contact you haven’t heard from in years.
What you need to know:
We at CommStar Credit Union will NEVER ask for your personal information by phone or email. We will NEVER send you a text message or email asking you to contact us. If there is something about your account that needs to be addressed, we will contact you directly, by a live member of our organization, never through any type of technology without your authorization.
Read these tips that can help you stay safe personally or at work, against phishing by clicking here.
Did you know CommStar Credit Union offers free identity theft protection services through ID Protect? It’s part of the benefits of your Star Checking Plus or Star Checking Rewards account!
Remember, never give out your personal information to anyone.
If you have any questions, please email us at MemberService@CommStar.org.
Fraudulent checks circulating in our area
Corporate checks are being circulated fraudulently for various scam attempts. These checks are known to come in various dollar amounts. Please call CommStar Credit Union at 440-365-7342 to verify legitimacy on any suspicious checks you encounter.