Credit Cardholders–Beware of Texting Scams
Texting is a quick and popular form of communication. It is also becoming a popular way for scammers to trick you into giving out your credit card number, bank account number or other financial information.
A popular texting scam sends a message, supposedly from a bank, saying there is a problem with your credit card or it has been deactivated. It gives a phone number to call to solve the problem. Once you call, the automated operator asks you to enter your credit card number. However, this is not your bank, and you have now given the scammers your credit card number and the keys to commit fraud with your account.
Tips to Protect Yourself from Texting Fraud and Spam
- Be suspicious of any message that is unusual or unfamiliar. Do not reply to these messages, even with the word “stop”. This just lets scammers know that your phone number is active.
- If you feel there may be a problem with your credit card issuer or bank account, look up your bank’s customer service number and talk directly to someone in their customer service department.
- If you reply to a scam text, contact your bank immediately so they can take action to protect your account.
- Call your cell phone provider and block the phone number from which the texts originate. There are also smart phone apps that can block spam.
- Complain to the Federal Trade Commission or call 1-888-382-1222.
- When you receive a spam text message on your phone, forward that text to the shortcode 7726 (which spells “SPAM”). Your wireless carrier will reply with an automated message asking you to enter the phone number from which the spam text was sent. This is a service provided by the wireless carriers to collect information about spam complaints into a common database to identify spammers and take action against them.