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May 17, 2024

How to Secure Your Financial Information from Scammers

From My Credit Union Part 1

Fraudsters often disguise themselves as organizations or individuals you trust to steal your personal and financial information. At [Credit Union Name], we want to remind you that we will never ask for your personal information unless you visit a branch or call our Member Contact Center.

Be Aware of These Red Flags:

Impersonators may contact you pretending to be from trusted entities like SchoolsFirst FCU, the Social Security Administration, IRS, or utility companies, using phone, text, or email.

Scammers use scare tactics, threatening legal action or account closures to coerce you into wiring or transferring money.

From My Credit Union Part 2

Phishing, Smishing, and Vishing Scams:

These scams lure victims into sharing private information. Scammers expertly impersonate reputable companies to convince you to hand over sensitive data or money. For example, they may pose as a department employee alerting you to unusual card activity and requesting your credit card details to “resolve” the issue.

AI Cloning

Scammers feed audio recordings of the person they want to impersonate into voice cloning software that studies things like pitch, tone and speech patterns. Within minutes, the software reproduces a person's voice well enough to fool their closest friends and family members.

How do AI voice cloning scams work?

Scammers cast a line of fake audio that describes a dire emergency to provoke a swift reaction. They may use the audio file to leave a voice message or during a live phone call.

Sample scenario:

(Phone rings)

Scammer: Hi, Uncle Dave. It’s Ben. I’m sorry to bother you like this, but I’m in a tight spot. I don’t know where else to turn.

Dave: Ben, what’s wrong?

Scammer: I need $2,000 for rent. Can you help me?

Dave: Whoa.That’s a lot of money.

Scammer: I’ll pay you back when I get my tax refund.

Dave: How soon do you need it?

Scammer: Today, or I’ll be evicted.

Dave: You’re putting me in a tough spot.

Scammer: I wouldn’t ask if I didn’t really need it.

Dave: Ben, you’re right. We are family. OK, I’ll loan you the money.

Scammer: Thanks, Uncle Dave. If you could wire me the money, that would be great.

Protect Yourself

If you receive a suspicious call, follow these tips:

 Refuse to commit to anything right away. Give yourself time to think and gather

more information.

 Verify the caller’s identity by asking questions about things only the two of you

would know.

 End the conversation.

 Contact the person they claim to be by dialing a phone number you know is

correct for that person. Don’t use the number that called you, as it might

reconnect you to the scammer.

 You can also report the incident to the Federal Trade Commission.

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Geisler Patterson Law


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