Another Crisis...Scammers Unite!
Fraudsters and Scammers be aware...we are on to your BS!!!!
If you can’t say that with confidence you need to start examining the way you interact on your mobile phone, online, with unfamiliar people or with your snail mail (Yes, fraudsters still send stuff with a stamp and envelope). In times of chaos you need to be hyper-vigilant to protect yourself and family.
With pandemics, tragedies or any crisis it is high-tide for people committing fraud to come out and try to take advantage of the situation. Difficult times increase the amount of fraud cases we see here at the credit union, but it’s not just us, it’s everywhere. Crooks prey on just about everyone. They have zero sympathy or empathy. All they want is your money and personal data.
What are some common scams, you ask?
Not pole and worm fishing…Typically, this is when you are sent an email with the fraudsters objective of stealing information about passwords, account numbers and other personal information. With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, people are getting fake emails from what appears to be popular organizations like WHO and CDC promising supplies, test kits and quick results. In no way are these real and should not be opened or responded to. You must be careful opening anything you don’t know, as it could contain malware that gets deposited into your computer and steals additional data.
There are numerous organizations collecting money for worthy causes that call your mobile or home phone. From your local police and fire department to the Muscular Dystrophy Association, you may get called on during pledge drives and asked to donate to these worthy organizations. Typically they’re fine, but there are others who claim to be from known companies like Microsoft, Apple and the Social Security Office letting you know something is wrong with your account. If they ask for personal information and/or payment for something, pump your brakes!!! Never share any personal information, especially bank account or credit card info. Come on, if SSA is asking for personal info, you know it’s a scam because they already have it…it’s the government. They already know YOU better than YOU do.
This is starting to become more prevalent. You’ll search something on the internet like, “need a covid-19 test.” From there a website may pop-up claiming to have test kits or supplies that can be shipped to your door. This is nothing more than a false business with really good marketing to make you feel like you're getting legitimate services. Once you load your credit card and personal information into the site to place your order, your transaction is complete. They get your money…AND YOU GET NOTHING. It’s incredibly important not to give out your credit union account info to people you don’t know.
If we’re diligent, we can help put a stop to crooks stealing. Best practices are to ask good questions, change passwords regularly, ask for callback numbers (then Google search the number for authenticity), don’t click on anything that isn't familiar, don’t give out personal info, don’t fall for the too good to be true scams and you'll save yourself lots of headaches and money.
If you find a scam or fraud…Please go here for more info…https://www.usa.gov/stop-scams-frauds. It’s legit…I promise :)
Written by: Kris Lewis, CEO