The Better Business Bureau Serving Western Virginia (BBB) has received numerous calls from consumers who received texts purported to be from a local area bank. These texts are fraudulently being used in an attempt to steal consumer’s personal information. BBB reminds consumers to never provide personal information to anyone you do not know.
These texts lead consumers to believe there is an issue with their bank account or bank card and immediate action is required.
The text messages consumers are receiving provides a number for consumers to call, or a web link. When victims call the number, an automated message claims their debit card has been compromised in some way and goes on to instruct the consumer to press ‘3’ to discuss a debit card limitation. Consumers who do so are directed to enter their 16-digit debit card number.
“This is a ‘Smishing’ scam,” states Julie Wheeler, President and CEO of the BBB Serving Western Virginia. “Never reply to the text message. Schemers are preying on victims that text back and ultimately verify that the text has been sent to an active cell phone. If the message has a link in it, never click it. Many schemers use this as way to spread a viral attack on your phone.”
If you receive a text such as these, BBB advises:
• Do not give out your personal information.
• If you believe there is an issue with your bank, call them directly.
• Do not respond to the text or click on any links provided.
• Contact your phone provider to block any suspicious numbers the texts are originating from.
• If you have already fallen victim to this scam, contact your financial institution immediately.
If you need more information, contact the BBB at (540) 342-3455 or (800) 533-5501.