Latest Phone Scam Has Resulted In Americans Losing Millions!
When I hear about phone scams, I get angry. Because it’s nearly always our parents who get tricked into forking over their hard-earned retirement savings. But this latest scam has me a little nervous! This one could fool ANY of us!
The guy I read about, “Peter”, nearly handed over the keys to his entire nest-egg! And what happened to “Peter” could easily happen to you or me. All the scammer needs to know is the name of your bank. And then they spring on you like a rabid hyena on a gazelle. Here’s how this one works:
You get a call. Maybe you don’t answer the unfamiliar number at first, but don’t worry. They’ll try again. And again. When you DO answer, the caller will say something like this:
Scammer: “Hi, Johnny! This is __________ from (name of your bank). We’ve noticed a recent charge to your account from Miami, Florida. Was that you?”
Scammer: “Okay (sound of typing) We’ve blocked that transaction. To verify that I’m speaking with Johnny, can I get your Member Number, please?”
You: “It’s _______.” (your member number alone is useless to a scammer)
Scammer: “Okay. And I see you’ve used your debit card at (names last 3 places you used your card). Is that correct?”
You: “Yes, it is…”
Scammer: “Great. Okay. Now, we’ll need to block the PIN number to stop any further fraudulent activity. Can I get that number, please?”
That’s when they’ve got you. “Peter” knew right away that NO BANK would ever ask for his PIN number. So he hung up and called his bank. And, of course, he had to completely change EVERYTHING at that point. Account number, passwords, debit cards, etc.
Maybe you’re thinking “They’d never get ME…” but don’t be so sure! Having received legitimate calls from his bank regarding attempted fraud in the past, “Peter” didn’t suspect anything unusual.
In this case, the scammer even sent the guy a “Confirmation Text” which came from his bank! This is a common feature of most accounts, and you can generate one simply by logging in from an unfamiliar computer or device. Anyone who tries to log into your account from a strange computer will generate a “Is this really you?’ text.
It’s a dangerous world!
I spoke to a great Financial Representative at my bank (and if you think I’m gonna type the NAME of my bank here, you’re nuts!). Her advice is: “Hang up and call your bank.” The minute anyone starts asking for personal information, just hang up. And call your bank. It’s as simple as that.
Also, if merely HEARING about this stuff makes you angry? Tell someone about this blog. Or forward it to someone. The more we know, the harder it is for these jerks to scam us.
Be careful out there!