Don’t fall for a fake.
Imposters (they are also monsters!) can come in all different shapes and sizes, from banks, credit card companies, real estate and utility companies, to family members and government agencies.
Text Messages: You look at your phone and you have a new text message saying it is your Bank or credit card company. The message tells you to click this link and download a new app to secure your identity or customer account. It’s strange because you’ve never received a text from the Bank at this number before, and you already have the banking or credit card app downloaded, or at least you thought. Don’t click that link. There are a number of red flags to watch out for to recognize a phishing attack. Although this trick is commonly employed over email, savvy thieves are now trying to install ransomware or steal your financial or personal information by impersonating a bank, credit card company, or service provider by phone calls or even text messages. Phishing is when a fraudster tricks a consumer into providing their personal information through a fake app or website. The site may appear to have a copy of USAA’s or another company’s logo and appears legit. So how do you tell it’s not?
Follow these tips to detect a scam by text and protect your identity and your information:
- Check the number and search for how your Bank or credit card company has texted you in the past. Are they different? Don’t click the link!
- Is this message irregular? If you have not recently conducted business, used your cards or logged in via the app, mobile or desktop, it may feel out of context to be receiving this request. Don’t click it!
- Are they using the right terminology for you and your account? Do they have the right name for your account? If it is different or unfamiliar, don’t click it!
Recognize pressure tactics.
- Fraudsters use pressure tactics to create a false sense of urgency. They may tell you they will disconnect your electricity, you’re late with a payment, or your benefits will be discontinued. That pressure is definitely a “Red Flag”.
Stone Bank will never ask that.
- Stone Bank will never call you and then ask you for your one-time verification code, PIN, password, or other personal identification details. If something feels strange, hang up immediately.
Go to the source.
- Confirm who you are dealing with by calling the number on the back of your card, at a trusted number on the company website, or by verifying the email address with the sender.
SECURITY BEST PRACTICES
- Be alert. Be informed.
- Never send money to someone you don’t know in real life, especially using gift cards or a third-party app like Zelle®, Cash App, ApplePay, etc.
- Monitor your accounts regularly, respond to fraud alerts and report unauthorized transactions promptly.
- Report any suspicious emails, calls, texts or links to email@example.com