Action Line Consumer Alert: Bank phishing scheme

A robocall is a phone call that uses a computerized auto dialer to deliver a recorded message.

Criminals have been using this technology for a while, but there has been an upswing in a new type of robocall phishing scheme.

“The bank phishing scam is really quite terrifying for a lot local residents. They’ll get a phone call reporting to be from their lender or their bank, saying that their bank cards, credit cards have been cancelled. And that they’re then asked to put in their checking account or savings account numbers into the telephone at that time,” said Greg Dunn, Hawaii Better Business Bureau.

The robocalls aren’t just about your savings or checking account.

“It also works with credits cards where they’ll tell you your credit card has been deactivated and ask you to put your credit card number in. In which point in time, the thieves then have your credit car number,” Dunn said.

Dunn says that reputable banks or financial institutions would never use a robocall to contact you. In fact, that would be illegal.

“It’s against the law for anyone to robocall you unless they are a politician running for office or a charity looking to raise money,” Dunn said.

So what’s the best thing to do when you get an automated voice call asking for your financial information?

“Simply hang up,” Dunn said.

What should you do if you are worried you may have given sensitive information out?

“We urge them to please contact the lenders that they may have put the account numbers in for. The banks can then safeguard your accounts. They can also work to provide you new account numbers and help to protect your financial identity,” Dunn said.

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