Be Wary Of Who Is Calling You!
It May Not Be Who You Think!
The new trend for crooks is a term known as “vishing,” where not only does a human call you up to ask for information but so too does a robot.
Take for instance the following:
You are at home on a weekday, watching tv or reading a book and the phone rings. You aren’t expecting anyone but your caller id shows a local number and it looks like it’s similar to the number you dial to get to your bank. You think, “maybe something happened to my account,” or “maybe someone stole my card.” So you pick up the phone and a computer comes on telling you that you are being contacted by the bank’s fraud department and to stay on the line.
When the customer service agent comes on the line and introduces themselves, they begin to tell you that you need to verify information on your debit card so that you can get a new debit card and all the current charges pending on your account can be verified and stopped.
“Is this your address?”
They read off your address and you agree knowing they are correct.
“Is this the last four of the card?”
As they give you the numbers you start to feel more comfortable and think they really may be from the financial institution.
“Can you tell me so I can verify you, what is your mother’s maiden name?”
You give it a second thought but you give it to the agent because you are feeling comfortable.
“Can you give me the three digit code from the back of the card?”
You spin your debit card around and read the code off for the agent.
“Just so we can order your card and have it all set up for you, what is your PIN number on your current card?”
And you give your number away.
When you go to your bank in the afternoon they inform you that charges were made on the other side of the country that have wiped out nearly half of your account.
“But how,” you ask, “I was speaking to a representative of the bank?”
What Should You Have Done?
When the call came in and the representative informed you that they were from the financial institution there are things that you can do to verify that. Most importantly there are steps you can take to protect yourself.
Ask questions - ask the representative how the weather is in the neighborhood. If the caller id shows “Monticello” or “Liberty” ask them about the weather. If they are truly in the county they’ll be able to give you an idea. While it sounds silly, it can knock a scammer off their game.
Your address and the last four of your card can be found online. Don’t feel comfortable if someone reads that off to you, they are trying to make you put down your guard. Don’t do it!
Don’t give out personal information to someone you don’t know. Who is this person? Do you know them? Do they work at the local branch? Are you sure?
Don’t ever give out any information to any unsolicited phone call EVER!
Now that you know these facts you can be confident in knowing that if you get a call from a scammer you can be confident. Be prepared and be assured that you will not be vished.