800-566-1533 CU Routing #263079124

PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FRAUDSTERS

Scammers are on the rise. Be ready with these tips and tricks to identify any fraudulent activity and if you’re ever unsure, call us immediately at 800-566-1533.

Fraudsters and identity thieves steal billions of dollars from unsuspecting individuals every year. According to data from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), increased 14% from the previous year with reported fraud losses exceeding $10 billion in 2023 alone.

Consumers reported staggering losses of over $4.6 billion – yes, billion! – to investment scams, and nearly $2.7 billion from imposter scams. These scams include instances of business and government impersonation. Samuel Levine, Director of Consumer Protection at the FTC, emphasized, “Digital tools are making it increasingly convenient for scammers to target hard-working Americans.”

Here are some of the most prevalent scams highlighted by the FTC:

Imposter Scams: 
Imposters often pose as familiar figures like family members, friends, representatives from government agencies such as the National Credit Union Association (NCUA), IRS, or Social Security Administration, tech support entities, or businesses you frequently engage with. Their goal is to to gain your trust to steal personal information, request purchases of gift cards, digital currency, or initiate money transfers. It is best to reach out to these agencies, family members or friends to confirm that requests are real rather than trusting any message from a source you may not recognize.

Government agencies, including the NCUA, do not solicit money or personal/financial information over the phone. If uncertain about the authenticity of a caller, DO NOT share any information or send money. Instead, end the call and verify the caller’s identity by contacting the organization directly.

Online Shopping Scams: 
Online shoppers fall prey to various scams, ranging from non-delivery of products despite payment to losing money to counterfeit websites and applications. Scammers create fraudulent websites mimicking those of prominent retailers to steal money and payment details with no intention of fulfilling orders.

Before making a purchase, review refund and return policies to seek out if they are legitimate. In cases of undelivered orders or denied refund requests, dispute the charges as soon as possible. Use a credit card for online transactions as it can streamline the dispute resolution process. Exercise caution with suspicious websites and apps, opting for official retailer platforms that likely offer enhanced security measures or trusted third-party resellers. Regularly monitor credit and debit card transactions to promptly identify unauthorized purchases or withdrawals that appear to be fraudulent activity.

Phishing:
Phishing consists of scammers sending deceptive emails, texts, or social media messages appearing to be legitimate businesses. These communications prompt recipients to share sensitive information by directing them to counterfeit websites resembling authentic ones. Once accessed, victims may be coerced into providing personal data such as Social Security numbers, login credentials, mother’s maiden names, or birthplaces. Subsequently, scammers exploit this information to steal funds or sell information to other malicious scammers.

Legitimate businesses and financial institutions will never call you for account verification or sensitive information. Avoid clicking links embedded in unsolicited emails or messages that you do not recognize the sender. If uncertain about the legitimacy of a message, you can verify by reaching out to the business or visiting its official website to confirm. Never disclose personal or sensitive information in response to unsolicited requests from the phone or internet.

If you suspect fraudulent activity on your account, CALL US IMMEDIATELY at 800-566-1533.

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