Reports of attempted financial scams are on the rise, and we do not want you to become a victim. Below are current alerts and also tips to help guard against scams and identity theft.
Tax Refund Scam
The Internal Revenue Service is warning taxpayers of a quickly growing scam involving erroneous tax refunds being deposited into their bank accounts. After stealing client data from tax professionals and filing fraudulent tax returns, these criminals use the taxpayers' real bank accounts for the deposit. The IRS also offered a step-by-step explanation for how to return the funds and avoid being scammed. More information is available here.
Illegal Skimming Devices Found in Frederick
Illegal Skimming Devices Found in Frederick The Frederick Police Department is investigating five incidents of illegal skimming devices found on ATM machines in the City of Frederick.
The Equifax Data Breach: Does It Impact You?
An estimated 143 million people have been impacted by a recent data breach at Equifax. A data breach is an unauthorized viewing, access, retrieval or theft of data.
Nymeo does not endorse or promote Equifax or any of their products. However, we encourage all of our members to check whether you are one of the millions of people whose data may have been compromised.
What Members Can Do:
--Determine if you have been impacted by this breach. You can find out by visiting equifaxsecurity2017.com.
--Monitor credit activity. Before enrolling in any service, you should weigh the costs and the benefits. The Federal Trade Commission provides additional information about Identity Theft Protection Services. We also encourage members to pull all three credit reports annually for free at annualcreditreport.com.
--If you have questions or concerns about this breach, call 866-447-7559. This is a direct call center created by Equifax to assist consumers and is open every day from 7 am to 1 am.
--Look for notification from Equifax via direct mail. Equifax is sending direct mail notices to consumers whose credit card numbers or dispute documents with personal identifying information were impacted.
-- Other recommendations include resetting account passwords, PIN codes and other log-in credentials on financial accounts that may be vulnerable. And, establishing multiple-authentication protocols for financial accounts and email, when possible
As a Nymeo member, we care about your financial well-being. We are available to answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding your account(s). You can reach us at 855-436-4100 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is Pharming?
Pharming is the act of redirecting Internet domain name requests to false websites in order to capture personal information, which may later be used to commit fraud and identity theft.
For example, an online banking customer, who routinely logs into his or hers online banking website, may be redirected to an illegitimate website instead of accessing his or her own bank's website.
What is Phishing?
Phishing is a scam that encompasses fraudulently obtaining and using an individual's personal or financial information.
For example, the consumer receives an e-mail, instant messenger messages or blog posting appearing to originate from a financial institution, government agency or other entity that requests personal or financial information. The e-mail or message often indicates that the consumer should provide immediate attention to the situation described by clicking on a link. The provided link appears to be the website of the financial institution, government agency or other entity.
However, in phishing scams compared to pharming, the link is not to an official website, but rather to a phony website. Once inside that website, the consumer may be asked to provide a Social Security number, account numbers, passwords or other information used to identify the consumer, such as the maiden name of the consumer's mother or the consumer's place of birth. When the consumer provides the information, those perpetrating the fraud can begin to access consumer accounts or assume the person's identity.
Most Recent Phishing and Pharming Scam
It has been brought to our attention in the past that a limited number of our members and non-members have received an email or text message directing them to a website that asks for a username and password to access My Nymeo Online Banking, in addition to requesting personal information. This website is not owned or operated by Nymeo. This is a Phishing and Pharming fraud.
Please keep in mind:
- Nymeo does not ask for personal information, such as your Social Security number or account number, via email or pop-up boxes on the Internet. If you get such a request that asks you to update or verify your personal information, don't respond. It's a scam.
- Identity thieves like to scare people into thinking their accounts have been compromised, ultimately asking for personal information. Nymeo does not send notices like this via email. If you get such an email, don't respond. It's a scam. In fact, you should never provide personal information, such as account numbers or your Social Security number, unless you are absolutely sure of who's asking for the information and how the information will be used.
- To guard against Internet-based scams, use antivirus and anti-spyware software and keep it updated.
- If you're unsure about a communication that says it's from Nymeo, or if you suspect you've been a victim of identity theft or other financial scam, please contact us.
- For more information about scams, visit the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Consumer Protection website.
Don't become a victim of the mystery shopper scam - it could be a costly mistake. Here's how it usually works: An employment ad promises payment if you pose as a shopper in order to help conduct market research. You're often asked to "register" online, and possibly pay a registration fee. In some mystery shopper scams, you are asked to "test" a money transfer service by depositing a check sent to you in your own account, and then wiring it to a third party. The check you receive may look like a legitimate cashier's check, but chances are it isn't. You are responsible for checks you deposit, so when the check turns out to be fake, you are legally responsible for paying your financial institution back. Protect yourself from this scam. Do not agree to pay a fee to become a mystery shopper. And do not accept a check for deposit into your account as part of a mystery shopper job. Nymeo has become aware of a Mystery Shopper Scam that is being mailed to consumers. This scam involves a fraudulent Nymeo cashier check sent from a mystery shopper company. If you receive a check that you suspect is fraudulent, please contact us at 1-855-436-4100.
The National Credit Union Administration warned consumers to beware of a new telephone fraud, known as a “vishing” scheme, that is using the agency’s name in an attempt to obtain personal financial information. Click here for information!
In this scheme, members receive a fake email from a Federal Agency (NACHA, the Federal Reserve, the FDIC or NCUA) attempting to trick the recipient into opening a link to resolve some type of problem with their account or deal with a recent transaction. Once the link is opened, "Gameover" takes control of the person's computer and thieves have access to usernames, passwords and eventually money in the account.
Complaints about lottery and sweepstakes scams are on the rise. Consumers have reportedly received letters and/or e-mails that they have won a lottery or cash prize. Some have even received a fake check for part of their winnings, but were asked to send money to a "tax agent" to cover the "taxes" to get the rest of the money. Many letters have urged recipients to keep this information "confidential" until they send in their money to cover the "taxes." When the check bounces, you are liable for the entire amount, plus any fees - and you're also out any money the scammers persuaded you to send to their "tax agent." Remember, there is no need to ever send money in order to win a prize. Legitimate lotteries and sweepstakes withhold taxes and fees before they award prize money, so you do not need to pay anyone up front.
ATM skimming scams have been on the rise locally. We want members to be aware of how this scam works and how to protect yourself. Card skimmer devices are installed by thieves on existing ATM machines and can sometimes be so discrete that you may not even notice them. The skimmer device is placed over the ATM card slot and reads the card's magnetic strip. The thieves then capture and store your card's information for later fraudulent use. There have also been reports of handheld skimmer devices that dishonest store cashiers use to swipe your card after you have made a purchase. If you suspect that you've been a victim of card skimming, please contact us immediately.
In response to reports of new text message scam, we'd like to remind members that Nymeo never communicates account information via text message. In this scam, consumers receive a text message stating that their debit card has been compromised or closed, and asking them to call a phone number. When the consumers call, they hear a recording that requests a 16-digit card number and PIN. Thieves can then use this information to attempt to gain access to these accounts. This new scam is currently being investigated in the New York area and has not affected Nymeo accounts. However, if you receive a text message that claims your Nymeo account has been compromised or closed, do not respond to the message or follow any instructions in the message. It is not a legitimate communication from your Credit Union.
NAFCU has learned that someone claiming to be from the association is calling consumers, telling them their debit cards have been compromised and asking them to verify the correct information. Don't fall victim to this scam. The scammer is instructing the targets of these calls to enter their 16-digit card numbers to verify them. NAFCU does not call anyone to ask them for debit-card information. It also does not send email asking for such information. If you receive one of these calls of any email requesting your financial account information or sensitive personal data, you should report this suspicious activity to StopFraud.gov.
If you have been a victim of identity theft contact the fraud departments at each of the three credit bureaus.
If your social security has been compromised, report it immediately to the social security administration.
Social Security Fraud Hotline: 800-269-0271
*If you have not reviewed your credit reports in the past 12 months please do so.
Here is a check list from one of Nymeo's workshops, advising Where to Keep Financial Records.
NCUA Warns of Fake Check Scams
Consumers Should Be Vigilant and Avoid Depositing Checks from Unknown Parties
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (April 10, 2017)
Consumers should be on the lookout for fake check scams, the National Credit Union Administration warned today after receiving numerous inquiries from consumers.
There are many versions of a fake check scam. However, the result is the same. Scammers lure consumers into depositing a cashier’s check, money order, or other checking instrument from someone that they don’t know and wiring or sending money to the scammers. A check may take considerably longer to clear the financial institution that issued it before the funds can be collected. It could take days or even weeks to discover that the deposited check was fraudulent.
When the check is discovered to be fraudulent, the damage may already have been done. Once a victim wires or sends funds from such a check, he or she may be responsible for reimbursing the financial institution for that amount. Typically, the financial institution will not cover the financial loss and expects the victim to pay the difference.
The Federal Trade Commission also recently issued a fake check scam alert. These checks can be hard to recognize. They may be printed with the names, addresses, and logos of legitimate financial institutions. Consumers are reminded to be on the alert and to not be pressured into wiring funds or sending money after depositing a check.
If you think you or someone you know was the victim of a fake check scam, consider taking the following steps:
• Contact your local law enforcement agency to report the scam.
• Contact your state’s attorney general. Contact information for each state’s attorney general can be found on the National Association of Attorneys General website.
• File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. Your complaint will be filed into a secure online database, which is used by many local, state, federal, and international law enforcement agencies. Complaints from consumers help detect patterns of fraud and abuse.
• If you or the victim is an older adult or a person with a disability, contact your local adult protective services agency. You can find local support resources using the online Eldercare Locator or by calling 1-800-677-1116.
NCUA operates an online Fraud Prevention Center that offers information about avoiding frauds and scams on its MyCreditUnion.gov website. NCUA also released a two-part video series for consumers on fraud prevention techniques.
Under the Federal Credit Union Act, promoting financial literacy is a core credit union mission. While credit unions serve the needs of their members and promote financial literacy within the communities they serve, NCUA works to reinforce credit union efforts, raise consumer awareness and increase access to credit union services. NCUA also participates in national financial literacy initiatives, including the Financial Literacy and Education Commission, an interagency group created by Congress to improve the nation’s financial literacy and education. Access NCUA’s Financial Literacy Resource center at NCUA.gov for more information.