How to Avoid Scammers Who Claim to be from Your Bank
Imagine this scenario: your phone rings and you see your bank’s name in the caller ID, so you answer.
The caller says they’re from your bank’s customer service department and that there’s a problem with your account that needs immediate attention. You get nervous when they start asking for personal information like your PIN or account password. What should you do?
You should hang up because it’s probably a scam in which the caller is using caller ID “spoofing,” where they use technology to disguise the number they’re actually calling from to make it look like your bank is calling you.
This scam is designed to trick you into divulging critical personal information that could be used to drain your account or even sold to crooks.
Here is information to help you prevent Spoofing from happening to you:
- Financial institutions won’t contact you out of the blue unless there is a major problem, and they will not ask for your account number, password, or PIN. Don’t ever divulge this information, even if the caller threatens penalties.
- If you have even a small suspicion that the call is a scam, hang up. Look for the toll-free number on the back of your bank card or look up your branch’s official phone number and call it. Tell the customer service representative who answers what happened and ask if there is really a problem with your account. You can never be too safe.
- Spoofing can also occur via email or text. If someone claiming to be your bank asks for personal information, don’t call any included number or click on any link in the message.
Knowing danger signs to look for and staying alert for phone or email scams can keep your money safe from crooks.