Scams + Phishing

Thieves are tricky, so you need to be smart.

Increasingly, unscrupulous people are even more adept at figuring out ways to steal your personal information and separate you from your wealth.

To avoid becoming a victim of fraud, do not provide personal information, account, banking or credit card numbers, PINs or login IDs through text messages. Certified Federal Credit Union never contacts you proactively to ask for this information, though we may request this information to verify your identity if you contact us. If you receive a call or text message from someone claiming to be with Certified Federal Credit Union and you are asked for this information, please do not respond. Instead, please contact us immediately at 323.859.2250, Option [2].

In general, if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If something doesn’t feel right to you, it probably isn’t. You have the right to refuse to provide your personal information to anyone that contacts you.

Common Scams + Phishing Schemes

Call-Forwarding Scam

This identity theft scam uses call-forwarding technology to empty victims’ bank accounts.

In a typical case, a victim receives a phone call from someone who claims to be a bank employee investigating why correspondence from the bank has supposedly been returned. Then they ask a series of leading questions designed to learn the name of the victim’s bank, along with credit card and account numbers.

Impersonating the victim, the scammer contacts the victim’s phone service provider to verify that the victim’s line has call forwarding. Then, posing as a phone worker, the scammer instructs the victim either to leave the phone off the hook or not to answer it for an hour for system maintenance.

The scammer dials in codes that forward calls to a number controlled by the scammer. The scammer then uses the victim’s account information to transfer money out of the account via Western Union and to make fraudulent credit card purchases. Call forwarding sends verification calls to the scammer, not the victim. Thousands of dollars can be stolen in this way in less than an hour.

Authorities warn against providing any personal or financial information over the phone unless you have initiated the call and obtained the number from an independent source, such as the telephone directory.

Phishing Alert from CUISPA

phishing-CUISPA

The voice message caller I.D.s come from Florida, Ohio, Texas, or Maryland. The SMS message I.D. comes from number 5000 and does not provide a return number. These calls and texts usually follow a similar script:

“This is an automated message from Bank Fund Staff FCU. Your ATM card has been suspended. To reactivate, call 1-410-910-0787.”

The voice messages are also automated, suggesting that the Bank Fund Staff account holder’s card has been suspended and requesting that the listener press [1] for more information. Pressing [1] transfers to a follow-up request for the account number, PIN, authorization code and other identifying information.