The devastating effects of financial fraud can destroy years of financial progress, planning, and hard work.
Please use the following educational information on phishing scams, identity theft, caller ID spoofing and credit card fraud to stay safe and protected.
One of the most common forms of financial fraud seen online, a phishing scam is malware used to gain access to usernames, passwords, and more. This is often done by disguising a piece of information such as an email with a credible signature, address, or institutional backing. Successful phishing scams may lead to identity theft, as well as credit card fraud in severe cases.
Phishing scams can be detected early on by remembering the ABCs of theft:
- Ask Questions: Ask yourself if sensitive information should be given out over the internet, a phone call, or through mediums where phishing could occur. Remember: your financial institution will never ask for your passwords, social security numbers, or credit card information in a text or email.
- Be Wary: Do not fall prey to emails or phone calls that threaten you with jail time, IRS bills, or personal threats. This is often a tactic used to get information from anxious, unwitting victims.
- Contact Help: Report any suspected phishing scams to your local financial institution.
For a full list of helpful tips, click here for the FDIC website.
Identity theft is the act of using someone else’s personal information to access funds, loans, credit cards, and other financial items. This form of financial fraud is usually the result of a successful phishing attack, although some thieves may have other methods of accessing personal financial information or documents.
Any unsolicited email, phone call, or suspicious contact should be reported online to the Federal Trade Commission, or by phone at 1-877-IDTHEFT.
Caller ID Spoofing
According to the Federal Communications Commission, Caller ID Spoofing is the act of falsifying the location of a call to appear nearby or within a general area. Malicious persons often use this tactic to develop a social rapport and easy line of information.
If you receive a call from an unfamiliar or suspicious person, it will be important to follow the mantra: “don’t hang on, hang up!” Don’t answer any calls from unknown persons, and hang up immediately without providing further details. Ensure that you do not answer any questions asked, especially those that could be answered by a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no.’
Credit Card Fraud
Credit card fraud is often caused by the acquisition of personal information from a successful phishing attack. Once obtained, thieves have the option to open fraudulent lines of credit in your name, or even or wire money directly from your accounts.
To help prevent credit card fraud, all Freedom members have access to the following resources:
- Fraud alerts for all credit and debit purchases
- Automated fraud text alerts
- Transaction verification offered in real-time
- A smaller fraud exposure window with every transaction
Interested in our other features? Check out our online and mobile banking protections.
How To Get Fraud Alerts Through Freedom
Keep safe and protected on the go with financial fraud alerts through Freedom. To activate personal alerts, members should take the following steps:
- Update your mobile phone number and email by logging into your online or mobile banking account through Freedom. Select “edit profile” from the “settings” portion of the menu.
- Change, add or update your contact information under the provided forms.
- Opt-in or out of the program using the convenient online tools. If at any time you wish to unenroll yourself from the alerts, please text “STOP” to the phone number in question
To receive the most immediate service, Freedom recommends that members add the following numbers as safe contacts in their mobile devices.
- Our text message fraud alerts will always come from “91937”
- Any automated phone calls will come from “888-918-7313”
Saving these numbers will ensure that Freedom CU members will not miss any important fraud alerts. Automatic alerts and text message notifications are free for all members and are an important level of security for your debit and credit card.
Are you concerned that there might be a suspicious transaction on your bank account? Immediately call us at 215-612-5900. It is important to remember that legitimate representatives will not ask for any bank account, social security, or personal numbers through text or email.