Phishing Alert: Text Message and Phone Phishing
Credit unions and leagues across the country continue to report a steady volume of text message and phone phishing attacks against credit union members and non-members. Many of the individuals being targeted do not belong to the credit union whose name appears in the text message or phone call, or, in some cases, the fraudster just uses "Federal Credit Union."
The recent message reported indicates the individual’s card has been restricted due to "irregularities," and in order to re-activate the card, they must call a number listed. Some members have fallen prey to the scam and provided their card information, which resulted in subsequent fraud.
Please do not fall for this scam and do NOT provide any information if you receive this type of automated or text message. It is a phishing scheme, one of the trends of fraudulent activity.
Police FCU will NEVER initiate any outbound communication with you by phone, e-mail, or text message requesting your personal information, account number, PINs/passwords, or other confidential information.
If you feel an e-mail, phone call, text message or any communication claiming to have come from the Credit Union is fraudulent, please contact us as soon as possible so that we may investigate. If you have already responded to this or a similar e-mail or phone call and provided any confidential account information, notify Police FCU immediately about the scheme. We will help you change your account PIN and help you take any other action necessary to protect your account.
10 Ways to Prevent Phishing
Adapted from Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG)
1. Be suspicious of any email or text with urgent requests for personal financial information. Call the financial institution if they need anything from you. Please remember, Police FCU will NEVER initiate an outbound communication with you by phone, e-mail, or text message requesting your personal information, account number, PINs/passwords, or other confidential information.
2. Spot a Phish: Phishers typically include upsetting or exciting (but false) statements in their emails to get people to react immediately.
3. Spot a Phish: Phishers typically ask for information such as usernames, passwords, credit card numbers, account numbers, social security numbers, date of birth, etc...
4. Don’t use the links in an email, instant message, or chat to get to any web page if you suspect the message might not be authentic or you don’t know the sender or user’s handle. When in doubt, don’t click the link.
5. Avoid filling out forms in email messages that ask for personal financial information in emails.
6. Consider installing a Web browser tool bar to help protect you from known fraudulent websites. These toolbars match where you are going with lists of known phisher Web sites and will alert you.
7. The newer version of Internet Explorer version 7 and 8 includes this tool bar as does FireFox version 2.
8. Regularly monitor your credit union, credit and debit card statements to ensure that all transactions are legitimate.
9. If anything is suspicious or you don’t recognize a transaction, contact the credit union and all card issuers immediately.
10. Ensure that your browser is up to date and security patches applied.
If you are suspicious of any communications that claim to be from the credit union, we encourage you to report the incident to the credit union, the Federal Trade Commission (www.ftc.gov) and to also file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (www.ic3.gov).