Archive for the ‘ Community ’ Category

Citizens delivers 107 blankets to six area organizations

September 17-21, 2018 was Minnesota Bankers Association’s Community Impact Week, in which Citizens Bank Minnesota was a proud participant. Across the state, 86 banks and over 259 branches joined forces to serve their local communities. Citizens chose to collect blanket and fleece donations to create comfort for those in need. Citizens employees were able to create 107 fleece tie blankets to give to six area organizations. Those organizations include New Ulm Virginia Piper Cancer Center, NUMAS Haus, the foster care system of Watonwan County Human Services, Mayo Clinic of St. James, Madelia City Hall to be used by police, rescue and fire, and 360 Communities in Lakeville.

Launched by the Minnesota Bankers Association, the Community Impact Week creates an opportunity for banks to highlight the many volunteer opportunities available to help build stronger local communities.  Citizens and their employees were proud to be a part of this effort and we thank everyone who donated at all of our locations!

Citizens employees with blankets

Citizens employees made 107 blankets for comfort

Employees deliver blankets to 360 Communities in Lakeville

Employees deliver blankets to 360 Communities in Lakeville

Citizens employees deliver blankets to NUMAS Haus in New Ulm

Delivering blankets to NUMAS Haus in New Ulm

Delivering blankets to the New Ulm Virginia Piper Cancer Center

Employees deliver blankets to the New Ulm Virginia Piper Cancer Center

Tips For Securing Your Social Media Accounts

cyber security awareness logoOctober is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, which highlights the importance of cybersecurity and online safety.

One of the biggest online presence that today’s society has is on social media platforms. Because they are being linked to an increasing number of applications on phones and other devices, it becomes even more necessary to secure them.

Securing your personal social media accounts

The different social media platforms have security features that you should take advantage of. Here are some tips for keeping your accounts secure:

  • Close the accounts that you’re not using. Forgotten social media accounts may be compromised without being noticed. Hackers can leverage these and access other accounts linked to it, like your email.
  • Check what apps are connected to your social media. Do you use Facebook or Google to sign in for any other applications? Assess if this type of access is necessary.
  • Practice good password hygiene. Use different passwords for your social media accounts, and also make sure each password is complex and unusual. Enabling 2-factor authentication can prevent unauthorized parties from accessing your accounts.
  • Keep your mobile apps updated. Make sure you have the latest version of the platform you’re using. Security patches protect you from the newest known threats.
  • Use a unique email for your social media accounts. If possible, create a whole new email specifically for social media accounts so that if you are compromised, the hackers won’t have access to any valuable information.

Securing corporate accounts

Social media is also used as the public face of enterprises or even entrepreneurs who use it as an advertising tool or an avenue to establish their brand. Hackers sometimes take over a company’s social media to promote their own brand, gain followers, or even spread a specific message. This form of hacktivism is an ongoing problem, especially with Twitter accounts.

Here are some tips to keep corporate social media accounts secure:

  • Monitor your social media regularly—keep an eye on what’s happening on all your social media platforms.
  • Limit access to only the necessary people—the fewer people with access, the better. This makes it easier to control the posts and avoid any deliberate sabotage.
  • Separate what is personal and what is professional—you don’t want to accidentally post something personal on a corporate account.
  • Audit which tools have access to your accounts—regulate tools that help with posting since they might be vulnerable to attacks.
  • Be aware of the latest security solutions—some platforms might be moving away from passwords soon, or they may be implementing a new security feature that you may want to implement.
  • Like all users, practice good password hygiene and also implement strict policies about patching and updating.

Source: www.trendmicro.com

MBA Honors Sharon Nordby for 50 Years of Service

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Sharon Nordby and Citizens Bank Minnesota’s CEO, Lou Geistfeld.

Citizens Bank Minnesota employee, Sharon Nordby, was inducted into the Pioneer Banker Club at the Minnesota Banker’s Association Annual Summit on June 12.

“It is an award of the Minnesota Bankers Association to recognize and honor bankers who spend 50 years or more in the profession of banking in Minnesota,” Director of Education and Communications Eric Hauth said.

Sharon Nordby’s banking career began at Citizens State Bank of New Ulm (now Citizens Bank Minnesota), in New Ulm, MN as a full-time teller on January 15, 1967. She has been a true leader and has been a valuable asset to the bank throughout her many years at Citizens.

Over her years at Citizens, Sharon has seen many changes in the banking industry, made possible mostly by computers and improved technology. When she started in banking, interest and service charges were calculated manually and many ledgers were hand posted. Teller machines did not exist. Tellers doubled as bookkeepers. Checks were couriered to correspondent banks for clearance and manually posted to client’s accounts. The passbook savings rate paid at one time was much greater than the rate paid on any CD today.

In 1989, Sharon was promoted to Operations Officer/Assistant Cashier. Her duties included supervising the teller operations, vault management and security. She also served on the Management Team until her retirement in 2011.

Since July 2011, Sharon has been working on a part-time basis and truly enjoys the part-time position. Her fondest memory is that she met and worked with so many great people over the years along with meeting so many wonderful clients!

Citizens Bank Minnesota employees donate $3,000.00 worth of gifts to 6 families in need.

Citizens Bank Minnesota employees were excited to help 6 families in need this Holiday Season. Our main office in New Ulm as well as our three branch locations in Lafayette, La Salle and Lakeville each adopted area families as well as delivered needed supplies to the Crisis Nursery. Money was donated by employees, raised through bake sales and free-will donation luncheons, and a bank match was given making it possible to donate $3,000.00 in gifts for these families.

We were happy to help these families who would have had an otherwise difficult time purchasing the needed items themselves. It was also a great way to remember what the Holidays are truly all about!

May Your Christmas Be Merry & Bright!

Citizens Bank Minnesota would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

We’ve put together a fun Christmas Greeting video for you to watch. We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed putting it together!

Halloween Safety Tips

halloween safety picIt’s almost that time of year when children look forward to trick-or-treating, dressing up in costumes, decorating and obtaining more candy than they can possibly eat. As fun as it is, Halloween is also a deceptively dangerous night, and preparations for a safe and enjoyable celebration should begin long before Halloween night.
SELECTING A COSTUME
• Select a costume that doesn’t risk slips, trips or falls. Costumes should not drag on the ground.
• Wear comfortable shoes for walking. As tempting as it may be to wear shoes themed with the costume – high heels for Cinderella come to mind – they can be unsafe for youngsters to navigate.
• Choose a bright costume that motorists can see.
• Place reflective tape on costumes and trick-or-treat bags for increased visibility.
• Wear costumes with flame resistant fabrics (such as nylon and polyester) or look in the label for the notation, Flame Resistant. Flame resistant fabrics resist burning and should extinguish quickly.
• Avoid outfits with big, billowy sleeves and flimsy materials that could contact candles.
• Test any makeup on the skin beforehand, and don’t use it if there is an allergic reaction.
• Beware of accessories that could injure a child. Choose soft swords, for example, and avoid items with sharp edges.
• Be careful when selecting masks, scarves and decorations that nothing obstructs a child’s vision.
PUMPKIN CARVING
• No matter how much they plead, don’t let small children handle knives and carve pumpkins. Instead, have them draw their design with markers and let an adult do the carving.
• To avoid the possibility of a fire, use a flashlight or glow stick instead of a candle to light your pumpkin. If you cannot avoid using a candle, a small votive candle with a holder is safest.
HOME SAFETY AND DECORATIONS
• Outside your home, use flameless candles or keep burning candles and jack-o’-lanterns away from landings and doorsteps, where trick-or-treaters’ costumes could brush against the flame.
• Keep your home safe for visiting trick-or-treaters by removing from the porch and front yard anything a child could trip over such as leaves, garden hoses, toys, bikes and lawn decorations.
• When indoors, keep candles and jack-o’-lanterns away from curtains, other decorations and other items that could ignite. Do not leave burning candles unattended.
• Whether indoors or outside, use only decorative light strands that have been tested for safety by a recognized testing laboratory. Check each set of lights, new or old, for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires or loose connections. When in doubt – discard.
• Don’t overload extension cords.
• Restrain pets so they do not inadvertently jump on, scratch or bite a trick-or-treater. It may be best to shut your pet away from the commotion; some animals find Halloween especially spooky.
TRICK-OR-TREATING
• An adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
• Obtain flashlights with fresh batteries for all children and their escorts.
• Make sure cell phone batteries are fully charged. If older children are trick-or-treating by themselves or in groups, review with them the geographic boundaries where they may go.
• Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk. Walk facing traffic. Avoid darting from house to house in the middle of the street – cars aren’t expecting you to be in the middle of the street.
• Notify law enforcement authorities immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.
Happy trick-or-treating, and be safe!

Article courtesy of: Cincinnati Insurance Company

Citizens Delivers Random Acts of Kindness to 425 People

September 18-22, 2017 was Minnesota Bankers Community Impact Week, in which Citizens Bank Minnesota was a proud participant. Across the state, 95 banks and over 250 branches joined forces to serve their local communities. Citizens chose to split its staff of 94 into 13 teams and perform Random Acts of Kindness throughout the communities they serve. Citizens employees were able to impact 11 organizations and over 425 individuals. Some of the acts performed were providing healthy snacks to Davita Dialysis Center in New Ulm, serving hot dogs to the community in Lafayette and bringing a football jersey along with snacks to a local student who was recently hurt while playing football.
Launched by the Minnesota Bankers Association, the Community Impact Week creates an opportunity for banks to highlight the many volunteer opportunities available to help build stronger local communities. Citizens and their employees were proud to be a part of this effort!

Check out our video to see the businesses and individuals that Citizens impacted this year!

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