December 30, 2021: The CAFC continues to receive reports from victims who have been contacted by fraudsters claiming to be from their financial institution, law enforcement or one of their online merchants. Suspects claim that there have been suspicious charges on your credit card or in your online account. They claim the charge is either from an online purchase, in store transaction or overseas transfer. They then state they need your credit card information to cancel the transaction. Many reports indicate that scammers will gain access to the victims' computer to continue the "investigation".
Warning signs and how to protect yourself
- Calls from bank investigator scammers tend to happen early in the morning when a victim is still sleeping or not alert
- Financial institutions or online merchants will never request transferring funds to an external account for security reasons
- Criminals use call-spoofing to mislead victims
- Do not assume that phone numbers appearing on your call display are accurate
- Never provide remote access to your computer
- If you get an incoming call claiming to be from your financial institution, advise the caller that you will call them back
- End the call and dial the number on the back of your card from a different phone if possible or wait 10 minutes before making the outgoing call
- Phone and fax
A scammer calls you to ask for your help to catch a bank employee who has been stealing money. To help, you need to go to your bank and make a cash withdrawal from your account.
The scammer tells you not to let the bank teller know what you're doing because the teller might be involved.
After the withdrawal, the scammer meets you in a nearby parking lot, where you turn over the cash.
Variation: Unauthorized charges or compromised account
In a variation of this scam, the scammer claims to be from the bank or a major credit card provider. They say there are unauthorized charges on your account or your account is compromised.
In some cases, the scammer demands that you provide your credit card information. The scammer will tell you to send money for reimbursement fees or as "bait money" to help catch a bad "employee".
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