Email Scams (Phishing) and Text Message/Phone Scams (Vishing)
Phishing (email scams) and vishing (text/phone scams) are attempts by criminals to obtain your personal or financial information. This personal information is then used to impersonate you or steal money from your accounts. In both cases, the scammer poses as a trusted organization, like Texans Credit Union, and asks you to update or verify your personal information either online or over the phone.
Remember: Texans Credit Union will never email, text or call you requesting your personal information!
The most common of all scams, phishing uses fraudulent emails that look like they are coming from a trusted company or institution (i.e.: your credit union, bank or credit card company). These emails often look legitimate, complete with company names, logos, and a look and feel that you recognize. The emails are designed to get you to click through to a website where they will ask you to enter your personal information. To learn more, watch the video below.
Becoming more common, vishing scams use the same basic techniques as phishing scams but are done through fraudulent text messages or automated phone calls instead of through email. Vishing scams typically direct you to call a phone number where you will be asked to provide your personal information.
Important! If you receive a communication or call from someone claiming to be Texans Credit Union asking for personal or account information, don't respond! Instead, give us a call at 972.348.2000 (800.843.5295) to verify the communication.
Recognize Scam Communications
Here are some common reasons scammers may use to get you to provide your personal information:
- It's time to update your personal information in our system
- We have upgraded our website and you need to re-enter your personal information
- Your account has been compromised and you need to update your information
- Validating or activating your credit or debit card
- Resetting your PIN number
The communications and websites that scammers use to capture your personal information will often look exactly like those of the company you believe is sending the communication. There are, however, some red flags you can look for to identify scams:
- Communications ask for personal information, which no reputable organization would ever ask you to provide through email, text or an incoming phone call
- They typically have a sense of urgency - "You need to update you information now or lose access to your accounts"
- Because they typically originate outside of the US, they often contain misspelled words, incorrect grammar or awkward sentence structure
Tips to protect your personal information
Never provide personal information requested in unsolicited phone calls, emails, text messages or pop-up websites. Texans or any reputable organization already has this information and will not contact you for it.
If you receive an email, text message or phone call claiming to be from any trusted institution, including Texans Credit Union, first call the organization yourself to verify that the communication is real.
Never click on the links in an unsolicited email. If you would like to visit the organization's website, type the web address directly into your web browser to ensure you are visiting the correct site.
Update your passwords and personal identification numbers (PINs) often; and do not use the same password for all online accounts.
Keep anti-virus and anti-spam filtering software on your computers and keep them up to date.
Review your account statements monthly and your credit reports several times a year. Visit annualcreditreport.com for details on how to receive your free credit report.
If you want to learn more about online fraud, watch the video below or visit the Federal Trade Commission website.