The Berkshire Eagle reported yesterday an e-mail phishing scam that targeted Legacy Banks customers and non-customers.
“Phishing” scams, involve thieves illegally asking for your personal financial information and then using it to commit identity theft by charging your existing credit cards; by opening new credit card, checking, or savings accounts; by writing fraudulent checks; and/or taking out loans in your name.
In the Legacy case, as is common in e-mail phishing scams, the bogus e-mail included the bank’s logo and other information that gives it the look of a legitimate bank request. In this case, the e-mail asked recipients to send personal data in order to re-open closed accounts.
Banks will never request your personal information by e-mail, text message, or telephone. If you receive that kind of contact from your bank, alert your bank immediately. Make sure if you receive a phone number to call or a Website to visit, that you instead track down the URL or phone number of your bank from your statement, to be sure you are calling or going online to the right location.
Banks have become adept at handling phishing scams that target their customers, and banks will work quickly to notify consumers of the scam. Of course, you might receive a phishing attempt before notice can be sent out. A good general rule: Always make sure you’re dealing directly with your bank or other institution, and never give out personal information unless you have initiated the dialogue.
How to Combat Illegal Robocalls posted on Jul 25
Robocalls have become an all-too-common nuisance for consumers. Robocalls are unsolicited, pre-recorded phone calls, often scams, which are made to consumers without their permission, as opposed to calls solicited by the consumer, such as those from pharmacies and childrens’ schools. Robocalls are illegal in Massachusetts under M.G.L. c. 159C. While consumers can, and should, sign-up -for both the state and national Do-Not-Call lists, unfortunately this does not always stop many unscrupulous solicitors and scammers from making these calls.
Summary of the 2015 Consumer Federation of America Annual Consumer Complaint Survey posted on Jul 22
The Consumer Federation of America and the North American Consumer Protection Investigators recently released the results of the 2015 Consumer Complaint Survey. This report is based on consumer information, complaints, and suggestions for increased consumer protections from 33 consumer agencies in 21 states.
Do-Not-Call Consumer & Solicitor Responsibilities posted on Jul 20
The Massachusetts Do-Not-Call Registry allows consumers to stop receiving certain telephone solicitations simply by signing-up and providing their telephone number. Established in 2003, the law requires telephone solicitors, list-brokers, and telemarketers to register with the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, subscribe to the Do-Not-Call Registry, and remove registered telephone numbers of consumers from their call lists.