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Debit Card Phishing Scam

Fraud Alert

Perpetrators are once again attempting to obtain debit card information for fraudulent use. We have been notified that PTOFCU members and non-members are receiving automated phone calls on landlines and cell phones. The message says the call is from the Patent & Trademark Office Federal Credit Union Fraud Department and that the debit card of the person receiving the call has been suspended. The person is then instructed to enter their 16-digit card number and PIN or to contact a number the caller provides to reactivate. PTOFCU does not request any member information via automated calls, emails, or voice calls. If you receive a fraudulent call or email do not provide your personal information.

ATM Skimming Devices

ATM skimming frauds are increasing. The fraud occurs when a perpetrator installs a device that sometimes looks just like part of the ATM over the ATM card slot. Sometimes, a tiny video camera or a key-logging device is installed too. The skimmer records information from the magnetic strip on your ATM card. Then, the video camera or key logger records you punching in your four-digit PIN. The stolen information is transferred onto other cards and used to make withdrawals at various locations, which can go unnoticed by your financial institution and you.

Tips to Protect Yourself

If you think you've been a victim of this scam, call your local police department and your financial institution.

NCUA Phishing Scam

March 6, 2009

Another scam email falsely states that the member’s account is suspended due to new security measures all federal credit unions are required to have. It then asks the member to call a given telephone number to reactivate the account. See a sample of the email.

January 21, 2009

A fraudulent e-mail seeking credit card information (known as a 'phishing fraud') has been circulating nationwide since 2 p.m. EST today. This fraudulent phishing email appears to be from NCUA and contains a link purportedly to obtain a subscription for the NCUA Express Subscription service. When that link is used, the recipient is directed to a 'clone' of the NCUA Express Service site that seeks credit card information from those to whom the phish was sent. If you receive such an email, please ignore it, as it is fraudulent. The NCUA does NOT charge for the Express Subscription service and does NOT solicit credit card information over the Internet. If you have questions or comments, please contact the NCUA Fraud Hotline at 800-827-9650 or, during off duty hours, at 703-728-0700.

Vishing Scam

December 19, 2008

Vishing operates like phishing by persuading consumers to divulge their Personally Identifiable Information (PII), claiming their account was suspended, deactivated, or terminated. Recipients are directed to contact their credit union or bank via the telephone number provided in the text message, e-mail or by an automated recording. Upon calling the telephone number, the recipient is greeted with 'Welcome to the bank of ...' and then requested to enter their card number in order to resolve a pending security issue. These scams can seem very real because they often contain warnings about not divulging your personal information, which may make a potential target feel the company calling is legitimate. A PTOFCU member was recently targeted by a vishing scam on their cell phone. The text message said 'This is an automated message. Your ATM Card has been suspended. To reactivate call ...'.

Phishing Scam

Perpetrators are attempting to obtain credit card and debit card information using an automated telephone service. The system indicates that the cardholder's card has been placed on a hold status, and that in order to activate the card, the cardholder must call a toll-free 866-number and enter the cards 16-digit card number.

If you receive an email that is purported to be from the CO-OP Network asking for your personal information, please note that the email was fraudulent as CO-OP Network never contacts credit union members directly and never requests personal account information. The email should be considered a deceitful attempt to obtain cardholder information with the intent of committing fraudulent activity against your accounts.

What should you do if you suspect vishing or phishing?

Instead of calling the number listed, call the credit union, bank, or the number on the back of your ATM, check card or credit card. The status of your account can be safely verified. The main thing to remember is to never call the number listed on any potential vishing or phishing scams.