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Mon, Dec. 09

Sophisticated bank scam involves text verification code

If you receive a call from someone claiming to be from your bank's fraud department, be on alert. If they ask for your bank ID number and then send you a text verification code, it may seem legitimate but it could be a new, sophisticated bank scam. (WNI Illustration)

If you receive a call from someone claiming to be from your bank's fraud department, be on alert. If they ask for your bank ID number and then send you a text verification code, it may seem legitimate but it could be a new, sophisticated bank scam. (WNI Illustration)

Scammers have found a new way to access bank accounts by fooling even younger, tech-savvy consumers.

If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from your bank's fraud department, be on high alert. The caller may tell you there's been suspicion activity on your account, or claim there have been attempted withdrawals or large, out-of-area purchases made on the account.

How can you tell if it's real?

Remember, your bank or credit card company will have no need to ask you for confidential information, and they already have access to your account.

If the caller asks for your bank ID or member number, and then sends you a text message with a verification code, it may seem legitimate but it's likely a sophisticated new bank scam.

The text will display as an authentic verification code and come from your bank's real online services number. The scammer will tell you it's just a verification code they need, but it's really a password reset code.

If you give the caller the code it will allow the scammer to reset your bank password and give them access to your bank account. The caller may then seem legitimate because they can now tell you details about your recent transactions. Thinking they have gained your trust, the caller may ask for your four-digit bank PIN number.

If you receive a call where the supposed "bank employee" is asking for any confidential information, such as your bank ID, PIN numbers or passwords, hang up the phone and call your bank’s real fraud department.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reported last week that scam victims are getting younger and losses are getting bigger, partly because of more sophisticated scams.

Learn More

Learn more about consumer topics at, consumer.ftc.gov.

You can file a consumer complaint online at consumer.ftc.gov, or by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357).

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