This tenacious scam, called vishing, is an attempt to steal your personal financial information

Beware of Automated Phone Scams Seeking Personal Financial Information
Image: Pixabay
June 14, 2017

Consumers across the country should be on the lookout for automated phone calls pretending to be from your bank or credit union. While the call may seem official at first, it's actually a scam.

The automated message says that your credit or debit card has been suspended and asks you to contact their security department immediately at the telephone number provided. When unsuspecting consumers call the number, an automated system tells them to enter their credit/debit card number, expiration date, and PIN in order to "activate fraud protection on their accounts."

This tenacious scam, called "vishing," is an attempt to steal your personal financial information including card numbers, expiration dates, and PINs for your debit and credit cards. The email version of this scam is called "phishing."

How to Protect Yourself

Don't let a scammer steal your hard-earned money! Keep these tips in mind:

1) Never give your private information to someone you don't know who calls you on the phone.

2) If you get an automated call that tells you to call another number, hang up immediately and call the number listed on the back of your credit or debit card to inquire about any potential issues with your account. DO NOT call the number the automated message tells you to call.

3) If you've responded to one of these calls or been the victim of a similar scam, contact your bank or credit card company immediately to ensure there has been no fraudulent use of your account.

Report Suspected Scams

Report all suspected scams right away to the North Carolina Attorney General's Office and/or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). This will help to ensure that these con artists get caught and that no more consumers become scam victims.

Learn more about phone scams and how to recognize them.