By Hughes Federal Credit Union

One of the leading methods of identity theft and bank fraud is called vishing. Fraudsters attempting to impersonate businesses over the phone try to persuade victims into disclosing personal information.

Most vishing scammers will already know a handful of details about you. Social media alone can disclose your family’s full names, your place of employment, birthdate and more. Here’s how vishing works:

The scammer poses as a Hughes Federal Credit Union representative and calls you to let you know that your spouse applied to refinance their vehicle and added you as a cosigner. In order to move forward with the application, they need your social security number and current employer. This catches you by surprise but because you don’t wish to be rude you provide the information.

A scammer poses as a medical professional from a well-known lab clinic. They mention that you have a past due bill that needs to be paid or will be sent to collections. They provide you with a website where you can pay online then mention you can pay by phone using a credit card. You had some scans a while ago and assume that’s what they’re talking about, so you provide your credit card information.

Detecting a scammer can be difficult. Remember that legitimate businesses don’t make unsolicited requests for personal, sensitive, or financial information.

What to do if you think you’re a victim? Contact your financial institution so they can freeze your accounts, place temporary holds and monitor your assets. File a complaint with the FTC online, or call 877-382-4357 (TTY: 866-653-4261).

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