Education & Resources
As your community credit union, we believe a banking relationship is more than transactions. We strive to help you achieve your financial dreams by providing you with the tools and resources to make informed financial decisions.
Our Education and Resources center will help equip you with tools to help your financial journey.
Banzai Financial Education
Sign UpBanzai is a "choose your own adventure" game that prepares you for life's hardest financial decisions. We all make money mistakes, and budgeting looks a lot harder than it has to be. That's why we're offering you Banzai, a real-world financial wellness program used by tens of thousands of schools nationwide. All three Banzai courses—Junior, Teen, and Plus— take kids, teens, and adults through scenarios in a fun, lifelike simulation.
Saving money is not an end to itself—managing money well is about reaching goals. In Banzai, you will learn to make trade-offs, setting money aside for your needs and living well at the same time. In Plus, you will even watch how your choices affect your credit report, and your ability to borrow for a home.
As a Banzai sponsor, we offer this to our community for free! It's one thing to watch a video about buying a home—it's another thing to experience buying a home for yourself. Most importantly, Banzai prepares you to go after your personal financial goals.
No matter your age or experience with money, Banzai will help you take control of your finances. Sign up today and start playing.
Matched Education Savings AccountLearn More
The Matched Education Savings Account (MESA) program is helping hardworking students with limited incomes save for college expenses. For every $1 you save, the Northwest MESA program matches it with $3. Save up to $500 and you will be eligible for the maximum match of $1,500 for a total of $2,000!
You may be eligible if:
- You are a member of a household with an annual income under a certain level.
- You have earned income.
- You are an Idaho, Washington, or Oregon resident enrolled in or planning to enroll in a post-secondary school in one of these states.
- You are willing to save a minimum of $25 for six months.
*Household: individuals who share the use of a dwelling unit as primary quarters for living and eating separate from other individuals. Students who are claimed as dependents are considered part of their parents' household.
For more information and to apply visit nwmesa.coop. If you qualify, a staff member will contact you to make an appointment to set up your new MESA account.
We understand the importance of personal finance and the ability to manage it. That’s why we’ve partnered with GreenPath Financial Wellness (formerly Accel Financial Counseling) to offer free financial counseling for you and your family.
Visit GreenPath.comWith 45 years of experience behind them, GreenPath has the expertise to assist you with a variety of financial concerns. Please feel free to contact a GreenPath financial counselor for immediate help with any financial questions. GreenPath counselors focus entirely on your concerns and needs. They can help with budgeting, money management, debt repayment, and housing counseling. They can also help members avoid bankruptcy, foreclosure, and repossession. As needed, GreenPath counselors provide detailed worksheets and action plans.
GreenPath financial counselors are available:
Monday through Thursday from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. PST
Friday from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST
Saturday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST
Call GreenPath at 1-877-337-3399
Don't Always Trust Your Caller ID
We recently learned that a member received a call with the Caller ID of “Fibre Federal Credit Union." The caller posed as an employee of Fibre Federal soliciting a new loan. Luckily, our member sensed that the caller was not legitimate and ended the call. We want you be aware that Caller IDs can be spoofed. If you get a call with a “Fibre Federal Credit Union” caller ID and you sense something amiss, ask for the person’s name, and tell them you will call them back at the number you have for Fibre Federal (360-423-8750). Please let us know immediately if you feel you have received a fraudulent call from someone posing as a Fibre Federal employee.
Identity Theft Information
Identity theft is defined as the illegal use of someone else’s personal identifying information (such as Social Security Number, debit, or credit card) in order to get money or credit. It’s estimated that identity theft occurs every two seconds in the United States, and it has been the number one complaint to the Federal Trade Commission every year since 2000.
Your liability in the event of identity theft (as well as credit card theft) is limited by both state and federal regulations that protect consumers and by industry rules. Credit card users in particular are protected by the Truth in Lending Act and the Federal Reserve Board's Regulation Z, which limit their liability for unauthorized transactions to $50. In addition, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act and the Board's Regulation E specify liability limits for unauthorized electronic transactions and set forth procedures for recouping funds stolen from consumers' bank accounts. The limits are $50 if you notify us within 2 days of learning of the loss or theft of a debit card and up to $500 if you notify us after 2 days but within 60 days. You have 60 days to report any discrepancies after receiving your monthly statement to help recover any fraudulent losses, otherwise you could be held responsible for the full amount of such transactions.
Some tips for avoiding identity theft:
- Deter identity thieves by safeguarding your information, including your Social Security Number and account numbers.
- Thieves can place “skimming” devices on ATMs and Point of Sale locations to steal card and PIN numbers, so they can make fake cards. Look for anything unusual near the speakers and beside the screen. Gas pumps are key places to watch for these devices. Pull or twist on the device where you insert your card to make sure it’s secure. If it is loose, there may be a skimming device inside. If you find a skimming device, call police immediately.
- Password protect your smartphone, and install anti-virus software on your phone, such as Avast. Phones have been the latest targeting in SMS messaging, and apps that mimic banking apps, or run while using banking apps.
- Keep up-to-date anti-virus software on your laptop and PC.
- Be sure to monitor your account on a regular basis. Utilizing Online Banking and Mobile Banking to quickly assess your account will help in catching any fraudulent activity sooner, and limiting your liability.
- Do not write your PIN on anything you keep in your wallet or purse. The best method is to make the PIN something only you know and can memorize. Refrain from using your birth date, child’s birthday date, part of your Social Security Number, etc. If your wallet or purse is stolen with the card inside, even though the PIN is not written down, the thief has access to potential PIN combinations.
- Make sure your phone number is up-to-date. If we need to reach you regarding potential fraud, it will be important to have a current phone number attached to your account.
- Use your PIN for debit purchases whenever possible. Your PIN is another level of protection that is specific to your card only. This is especially helpful when traveling.
- One of the things we do to prevent fraud is to keep our eyes open for any unusual use of your cards. For example, if you normally only use it locally and suddenly, charges occur at a European resort, that could indicate suspicious activity. For your protection in that case, we might block further transactions from your card and try to contact you. You can avoid that inconvenience by contacting us before you travel. You can also use CardValet to set travel restrictions and notifications.
- In case you do have to report fraud or suspicious activity, make a list of cards and account numbers, but keep it in a secure place instead of in your wallet. This list will help to put an end to fraud as quickly as possible.
- If your card is lost or stolen, we are here to help. If you report suspicious activity to us we will stop further use of the impacted card, replace it and issue a new card number at no cost to you.
Fraud lines for after hours:
Suspected Fraud 1-800-262-2024
Lost or Stolen 1-800-472-3272
- We now have EMV chip cards! EMV chip cards provide an extra layer of security when you use them on site (not online). Not all merchants have caught up with this technology trend. If the merchant’s chip system isn’t operating yet, you can still use your card, but continue to monitor your transactions regularly.
- Be sure your card is returned following each purchase and that it is indeed your card.
- Wait for the receipt. Never leave it at the checkout counter. Keep receipts with you, not in your shopping bags, and dispose of them safely.
- Be sure that we have your updated email address. We will send you an alert when there is possible fraud on your account. For example, when your Online Banking challenge questions change, when your email address changes, or when a transfer to another member is requested.
- You can also set up your own alerts via Online Banking or Mobile Banking. These alerts can be sent to you either by email or text message. You can set these alerts to notify you when your balance falls below a certain amount, for certain types of transactions, and more. When logged on, select Accounts, then Account Alerts.
For more tips, please see the Federal Trade Comission's information about Identity Theft: What To Know - What To Do