TEXT MESSAGE SCAM
UTAH CREDIT UNIONS AND BANKS SEE SMISHING ATTACKS INCREASE
Many Utah citizens are receiving text messages, or phone call's supposedly from their credit card/debit card company asking them to surrender their card numbers, PINs, and expiration dates. Text messages often direct the recipient to contact a telephone number to re-activate their card due to an account or security issue. The Utah Attorney General’s Office has received numerous reports of different variations of this scam known as "smishing". These attacks against Utah financial institutions and consumers continue to rise at an alarming rate. No Utah Credit Union or Bank is immune to these attacks, and all cellular phone owners are potential targets to thieves looking to profit from well intentioned credit/debit card customers.
If you have a question concerning your account or credit/debit card, you should contact your credit union or bank using a telephone number obtained independently, such as from your statement, a telephone book, or other independent means.
Smishing operates like phishing by persuading consumers to divulge their credit card number, expiration date, Card Verification Value Code (CVV/CVC), and other personally identifiable information, claiming their account was suspended, deactivated, or terminated. Recipients are directed to contact their bank via a telephone number provided in the Text Message. Upon calling the telephone number, the recipient is greeted with "Welcome to the bank of ……" and then requested to enter their card number in order to resolve a pending security issue. A credit union or bank will NEVER request this information from a customer via cellular phone, text message, email, or any other form of electronic communication.
If you have received this, or a similar hoax, and provided financial information, credit/debit card numbers, or other personal identifying information, please follow the steps below:
Contact Your Financial Institution
Contact your financial institution and notify them of the unauthorized charges (if they are not aware of them). Close all compromised accounts and open new ones. Make sure to password protect all new accounts. Your financial institution will most likely require you to provide proof of your identity and will want you to complete an affidavit.
- Carefully review every credit card and bank statement for unauthorized charges.
- If you identify unauthorized charges, contact all creditors and financial institutions and inform them of the situation.
- If an account has been compromised, contact the financial institution and close all compromised accounts.
- Contact your financial institutions and request they flag your accounts. Instruct them to contact you immediately if there is unusual activity on your accounts.
- If an account was opened fraudulently in your name, contact the financial institution and obtain a copy of the credit application and a detailed account history. Close all fraudulent accounts.
Contact all three Credit Reporting Agencies
Contact all three credit reporting agencies and get copies of your credit report. You may order a free credit report online from each credit reporting agency at www.annualcreditreport.com.
TransUnion - Phone: 800-680-7289 P.O. Box 1000, Chester, PA 19016-1000
Experian Phone: 888-EXPERIAN (888-397-3742) P.O. Box 9532, Allen TX 75013
Equifax - Phone: 880-525-6285 P.O. Box 105069, Atlanta, GA 30348
- Review all three of your credit reports carefully according to the steps below.
- Recognize all accounts listed in your report and confirm that the balances are in line with your records.
- Recognize all persons and entities that have requested or received a copy of your report. (If you don’t recognize a person or entity, you may want to inquire further).
- Find inquiries to your credit report for loans or accounts you did not apply for. (If there are accounts you do not recognize, this may be a sign that an identity thief has fraudulently opened an account in your name).
- Confirm there are no addresses listed for places you have never lived. (If there are addresses you do not recognize, this may be a sign that an identity thief has redirected your mail).
- Check that all this information is consistent across all three credit bureaus.
If you find any incorrect or suspicious information, contact the credit reporting agencies immediately. If there is incorrect or suspicious information concerning a particular creditor, you will want to contact that creditor as well.
- Place a 90 day Fraud Alert on your credit profile with each of the three credit reporting agencies. Renew that alert every 90 days for at least one year. Placing a 90 day fraud alert on your credit profile entitles you to a free credit report.
- Vitims of identity theft may also request an Extended Alert from the three major credit reporting agencies, which stays in their credit file for seven years. If you ask for an Extended Alert, you will have to provide a copy of an identity theft report, which is a report you have filed with a federal, state or local law enforcement agency. An Extended Alert entitles you to two additional free credit reports from each credit reporting agency in a 12-month period following the placing of the alert.
- The surest resource available to prevent identity theft is a Consumer Credit Freeze. A Credit Freeze simply means that new credit accounts will not be approved and your credit file cannot be accessed by anyone without your approval. Even if thieves have all of your personal identifying information, they still won’t be allowed to get credit in your name. Victims of identity theft that provide a copy of an identity theft report will receive a Consumer Credit Freeze at no charge from the three Credit Reporting Agencies.
File a Police Report
After you have reviewed your financial statements and credit reports, if you believe that someone has established credit accounts in your name, conducted transactions without your permission, or used financial or personal information in any other unauthorized way, file a report on this web site. Or contact your local police department to obtain a police report with case number. A police report entitles you to certain protections from recurring effects of the crime, and is the surest way to clear your good name.
File a Report Online
If this is your first visit to IRIS, you will need to establish a login account before you can file a report. You can create an account by clicking on the "Create new user account" link at the bottom of the iris.utah.gov/iris login screen. Once the required information is entered, a validation code is emailed to the address you provide. The email will contain instructions on how to enter the validation code to complete the account set up process.
If you do not receive a validation code or you are experiencing technical difficulties, please CONTACT US.
Click the Report ID Theft button below to begin