The Latest Security Threats & Scams

Whether you are contacted by mail, phone or email, it is not Texans' practice to contact members unsolicited and ask for personal or financial information. If you are contacted by an entity claiming to be Texans who is requesting this type of information, do not respond and contact Texans immediately at 800.843.5295.

For information on the latest scams, read the postings below.


October 2013 - SMSing Scam - Text Message from Texans CU

Some members have received a text message that claims to be from Texans CU. In the message, it asks for the member's debit card and/or account number. If you receive a similar message, please do not call or text the number back, and do not visit any links given. The number may direct you to the Texans CU call center, leading you to believe the text message is legitimate. However, Texans CU would never contact you via text message and ask for your personal information. This is a phishing scam in the form of a text message (known as SMSishing). You can contact our Fraud Department at 972.348.2000 to verify your card and accounts are safe.


October 2013 - Mystery Shopper Scam

A Texas credit union has recently learned that a scammer is using its name as part of a mystery shopping scam. A number of consumers across the country received an unsolicited offer via email informing them that they could earn a specific dollar amount per week working as a "secrety shopper." Those that responded were informed they would receive a packet in the mail with additional information, including survey instructions, an evaluation form, and an authentic-looking cashier's check supposedly from a credit union in the amount of $2,070. The shopping assignments included an evaluation of Wells Fargo and Western Union.

The cashier's checks that are provided are counterfeit checks. Please be advised that legitimate mystery shop companies do not pay participants in advance. Myster shoppers are normally paid after they complete an assignment. Please be aware of any unsolicited opportunities that you receive. You can always call the institution that is supposedly paying for the assignment to verify the legitimacy of the offer.


July 2013 - Phishing Scam - Phone Call from Texans CU

An automated call states "Fraud alert from Texans Credit Union 888-997-1234". The recorded message goes onto say, "You account has been frozen due to fraudulent activity. To unlock it, please respond to this call...", at which time the automated operator will ask for your 16-digit account or debit card number.

Texans CU Members: If you have received this call and responded with your card or account number, please contact our Fraud Department immediately at 972.348.2000.

Non-Texans CU Members:
If you have received this call and responded with your card or account number, please call your financial institution immediately to report it.


May 2013 - SMSing Scam - Text Message from Texans CU

Some members have received a text message from an out-of-area phone number, 330-754-3399, that claims to be Texans CU. In the message, it states that the member's debit card has been suspended and the member needs to visit a website to reinstate the card - the website in one instance was listed as http://abc4c.divli.com/activate, but can be vary for different members. If you receive a similar message, please do not call or text the number back, and do not visit the website link given. Texans CU would not contact you via text message or ask you to re-activate your card through a site like this. This is a phishing scam in the form of a text message (known as SMSishing). You can contact our Fraud Department for verification that your card and accounts are safe - 972-348-2000.


May 2013 - SMSing Scam - Text Message from Texans CU

Members have reported receiving a text message that claims their debit and/or credit card has been deactivated. If you receive such a text message (see below) claiming to be from Texans CU, do not respond or call the number listed. This is a phishing scam in the form of a text message (known as SMSishing). You can contact our Fraud Department for verification that your card and accounts are safe - 972-348-2000.

Texans Credit Union Alert: Your Card #4761 has been temporarily deactivated. Please call Texans CU 24 hr line (570)445-5196 to reactivate.


March 2013 - Phishing Scam - Automated Phone Message from NCUA

The NCUA reports that there have been automated phone messages setup by scammers, which claim to be from NCUA and alerting members that their debit card has been deactivated. The call goes onto instruct the listener to press 1 on their phone and enter the 16-digit card number to reactivate it. This is not a call from NCUA, and if you receive such a call or message, please contact NCUA's Fraud Hotline toll-free at 1-800-827-9650.

For more information, visit the NCUA News Now page.


November 9, 2010 - Phishing Attempt - Email Solicitation Using NCUA Address

Texans has been notified of a scam involving individuals attempting to obtain member credit card numbers, expiration dates, and electronic signatures. In cases reported to the NCUA, the perpetrator(s) sent fraudulent emails, claiming to be from the NCUA, to credit union members and the general public. These spurious emails state that the NCUA will add $50 to the member's account for taking part in a survey. The link embedded in the message directs members to a counterfeit version of the NCUA's website with a fraudulent survey that solicits credit card numbers and confidential personal information.

NCUA does not ask credit union members or the general public for personal account or personally identifiable information as part of a survey. Any email that alleges to be from NCUA and asks for account information is fraudulent and should be treated as suspicious.

The NCUA has taken steps to shut down the fraudulent site; however, credit union members should remain alert to possible variations of this fraudulent email. If you have received this or any other suspicious email or phone call, do not respond and contact us at 800.843.5295.


April 7, 2010 - Phone/Email Scam from Entity Claiming to be NCUA

Texans has been notified of a scam involving fraudulent emails and telephone calls directed at the general public and credit union members. These false emails claim to be sent from NCUA and ask recipients to click on a link to confirm, verify or approve financial account information. If the recipient proceeds, the link directs them to a false website to verify or re-submit confidential information such as account and credit card numbers, Social Security number, password, and personal identification number, or to complete a member satisfaction survey and receive $80.

A variant, “vishing” scam uses telephone systems. A vishing scam occurs when a consumer receives a recorded message telling them a credit card and/or financial institution account has been breached and to immediately call a number provided in the message. The phone number leads the consumer to a fraudulent call center where people are asked to supply or verify pertinent financial account, Social Security or credit card information.

NCUA does not ask credit union members for personal information. Anyone who receives a supposed email or phone call from NCUA that asks for account information should consider it a fraudulent attempt to obtain their personal account data for an illegal purpose and should not follow the instructions in the email or phone call.

If you have inadvertently responded and provided confidential account information, please notify Texans Credit Union immediately at 800.843.5295 or 972.348.2000. You should change affected accounts and PIN’s, and take any additional action recommended by Texans to protect your account.

As always, if you receive a suspicious phone call, letter or email, please contact Texans immediately at 800.843.5295 or 972.348.2000.

If you feel that you have received a fraudulent NCUA phishing email, please forward the entire email message to Phishing@ncua.gov.

You can also file formal complaints concerning any suspected fraudulent emails with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) at www.ic3.gov. The IC3 is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National White Collar Crime Center, and the Bureau of Justice Assistance.


September 14, 2009 - Vishing Scam - Text Message Appearing to be from Texans

Texans has received notice from members and non-members regarding a new text message vishing scam. In these fraudulent messages, recipients are asked to reactivate their credit cards by calling a number provided. The intent of this scam is to steal a recipient's personal information in order to commit fraud using the card number. The text message may also request the recipient's PIN number as well as the name on the card. In some versions of the scam, Nextel, T-Mobile and AT&T subscribers have received messages allegedly from financial institutions stating that their account has been temporarily frozen and to call one of a group of phone numbers purportedly from CU of Texas, Resource One or Legacy Texas.

Important: If you have received such a text, do not respond. Neither Texans Credit Union nor the above referenced financial institutions have initiated these texts and it is a scam to obtain information for fraudulent purposes.

  • Delete the text message. Perpetrators have been known to use Spyware in conjunction with their text message solicitation. Spyware is software installed on your computer or cell phone without your consent; it monitors or controls the use of the device. It may be used in the cell phone for things such as monitoring your internet surfing, activating the speaker phone as a listening device, taking pictures with the phone camera, copying contacts, or recording keystrokes, which in turn could lead to identity theft.
  • Do not share personal and financial information with anyone except a trusted source.
  • Report this suspicious activity to your cell phone company.
  • Texans members can report the information to the FBI at www.ic3.gov.
  • Remember, whether you are contacted by mail, phone or email, it is not Texans' practice to contact members unsolicited and ask for personal or financial information.

If you are contacted by an entity claiming to be from Texans who is requesting this type of information, do not respond and contact Texans immediately at 972.348.2000 or 800.843.5295.


July 14, 2009 - Vishing Scam - Text Message Appearing to be from Texans

Texans has received notice that a vishing scammer has been targeting members and non-members through a text message. The text message reads:

From: Texans Credit Union
Subject: Texans Credit Union Notice
Text: All Texans Credit Union cards recently updated with a new security enhancement, to reactivate your card please call us at 214-975-9484.

When the phone number is called, the victim hears:

  • Busy signal, or
  • "Please leave your message after the beep”, or
  • “Welcome to TCU Security Dept. In order to reactivate your credit card, you must provide some information to get reactivated."

The victim then hears:

  • "Please enter your 16 digit credit card number." The number input is then repeated back: “Your credit card number is……”
  • "Please enter your 4 digit expiration date, month and year." The number input is then repeated back: “Your credit card expiration number is……”
  • "In order to complete the reactivation, please enter your 4 digit ATM number."
  • "Hold while your reactivation is complete."
  • "Your credit card has been successfully activated."

Important: This is a scam and has not been initiated by Texans Credit Union. Texans has taken action to have this fraudulent phone number shut down.

In order to ensure the privacy and security of your personal information, we ask all members who receive this or any suspicious message not to respond to it. Texans NEVER solicits personal or financial information via text messaging.


August 15, 2008 - Call/Email/Text Message Scam Taking Place in Texas Communities

Several Texas community banks have been the target of a particularly disturbing scam. Here is how it is perpetrated:

  • A community (generally rural, but urban areas have been victimized as well) will be blanketed with "robo-calls", emails and text messages directing the recipients to call either a toll-free or local number because their account had allegedly been compromised.
  • The contact has been described as "phishing on steroids" by one observer.
  • Customers calling the number(s) provided reached a phone customized with the bank name and a message appearing to be from that bank.
  • Customers were directed to enter their debit card number, expiration date and PIN.
  • Accounts were hit, primarily from ATM’s in Europe.
  • This scheme has generally been initiated over the weekend and the damage is done by the time the bank opens on Monday morning.
  • New technology has made it possible to "spoof" emails, phone numbers (caller ID's can be manipulated to display the bank's name) and calls can be forwarded anywhere in the world cheaply and easily.

Various regulatory authorities have been alerted to this scam and working to address it and bring the perpetrators to justice.


Cashier's Check Fraud

Genuine cashier's checks issued by a financial institution are good funds. However, counterfeit checks often look as good as real ones. Counterfeit cashier's checks have become a common method of committing fraud.

Common Scams

Each scam involving a fraudulent cashier's check may be different, but some of the more common scenarios are:

  • Selling goods – You are selling an item online. You have a buyer. The buyer sends you a cashier’s check for the price that you have agreed on, and you ship the goods to the buyer. The cashier’s check turns out to be fraudulent.
  • Excess of purchase price – This scenario is similar to the one described above. However, the buyer sends you a cashier’s check for more than the purchase price and asks you to wire some or all of the excess to a third party, often in a foreign country. The buyer may explain that this procedure allows the buyer to satisfy its obligations to you and the third party with a single check. The cashier’s check turns out to be fraudulent.
  • Unexpected windfall – You receive a letter informing you that you have the right to receive a substantial sum of money. For example, the letter may state that you have won a foreign lottery or are the beneficiary of someone’s estate. The letter will state that you have to pay a processing/transfer tax or fee before you receive the money, but a cashier’s check will be enclosed to cover that fee. The letter will ask you to deposit the cashier’s check into your account and wire the fee to a third party, often in a foreign country. The cashier’s check turns out to be fraudulent.
  • Mystery shopping – You receive a letter informing you that you have been chosen to act as a mystery shopper. The letter includes a cashier’s check, and you are told to deposit the check into your account. You are told to use a portion of the funds to purchase merchandise at designated stores, transfer a portion of the funds to a third party using a designated wire service company, and keep the remainder. The cashier’s check turns out to be fraudulent.

Other Types of Check Fraud

Scams can also be conducted with personal checks. For example, a fraudulent check may appear to be written on the account of a real person or company or be written on an account that contains insufficient funds to cover the check. Other scams involve fraudulent postal service money orders or fraudulent money orders that appear to have been issued by a financial institution.

The result of these scams is that the fraudulent check will be returned unpaid. The financial institution will then deduct the amount of the check from your account or otherwise seek repayment from you, and you will lose either the goods that you sold, the money that you sent to the third party, or both.

 

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