*** Text Message Phishing Scam ***
April 20, 2009


Dear Members,

Over the weekend, a new form of "phishing" attack using Text Messaging was attempted with a limited number of COPFCU members. Phishing is an attempt to trick you into revealing your sensitive information. The fraudsters will produce text messages, emails, voice mails and even websites that on the surface may appear to be from a legitimate organization or trusted source. At this time, we want to make you aware of this latest scam so that you can recognize these fraudulent attempts and protect yourself against them.

As we stated above, in this case the format being used is a text message to your cell phone or wireless device. The text message may say it is from Card Member Services and reads, "You have a new voicemail message from 1-877-218-3248. Thank you."

If you call into the fraudulent number, you will be prompted through an automated phone system and asked to input your 16 digit credit card or debit card account number. It will then ask for your expiration date/month/year, followed by your PIN. It will then advise that your account has been reactivated. (Please note that the telephone numbers associated with these scams constantly change as they are discovered and shut down. As of today's date, the fraudulent telephone number listed above has been shut down by the Federal Trade Commission. If you call the number today, you will hear a recording that notes that the phone number was shut down because it was involved in fraud.)

We would like to remind you that COPFCU and other reputable financial institutions will never contact you (whether via text message, email, voice mail or phone) and ask you to provide account information or personal information in order to reactivate your account. If you receive this type of message, you should ignore it and not call the number that is provided within the message. If you are suspicious of any communication that appears to be from Cincinnati Police Federal Credit Union, we urge you to call us immediately at (513) 381-2677.

To avoid becoming a victim of a Text Messaging scam on any of your financial accounts, COPFCU offers the following advice:

  • Reputable companies normally refer to customers by their full names in any communication. If an e-mail or phone call does not refer to your full name, it may be a scam.
  • You should not call a telephone number provided in a text message, telephone call, voice mail or an e-mail regarding possible security issues with any credit card or checking account. You should call the phone number on the back of your credit card or on your account statement to report security concerns.
  • If anyone claiming to be a credit card provider calls and requests your card number, hang up and call the phone number on the back of the credit card and report the attempt. If the call was legitimate, the credit card provider will have knowledge of it.
  • If you have provided any personal information through these fraudulent sites, you should contact your financial institutions to take corrective measures.

Again, the purpose of this letter is to make you aware of this latest phishing scam. If you have any questions regarding this information or believe you may have been impacted by this scam, please call us at (513) 381-2677.

Sincerely,

Tina Wocher