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Spot The Scams Targeting Your Online Banking

  • Security
  • September 2022
  • Premier America

As technology gets more advanced, so do scam and fraud attempts. Scammers continue to find new ways to disguise themselves and lay their traps in the hopes of accessing your online account and funds. Know how to spot and dodge their schemes before they get started.

There are a variety of Imposter Scams, where a fraudster poses as a business or person you trust and tricks you into sending them money or sharing personal information.

It happens by you receiving a call, text, email, or computer pop-up with an official-looking logo, email address, or phone number on your caller ID. The message may claim to be from your banking institution, a business-like Amazon contacting you about an unauthorized transaction, a loved one who needs help, or from a federal agency, like the IRS. The urgent message prompts you to call or take steps that can quickly lead to trouble. It is important to remain vigilant and if anything, ever doesn’t feel right, reach out directly to your financial institution or the business/organization allegedly contacting you.

Watch out for these notification requests:

Many scams come in the form of SMS text, email, or calls asking you to:
  • Verify your account or a transaction with your name, account PIN, full credit card number, or other personal information that the scammer can use to gain access to your account.
  • Provide a confirmation code that you believe a customer representative sent to your phone. The code you receive is prompted by the scammer on the phone clicking the “forgot password” link. Providing the code lets them reset the password and take over your account.
  • Update or submit payment details for a company you pay regularly or a potential employer from a job website. This redirects payments to the scammer’s account and opens the door for them to access your personal account.
  • Click a link or download an attachment (known as a Phishing Scam), which loads malware onto your computer, or links you to a look-alike online banking or merchant site, prompting you to log in or fill out a form. The scammer can now capture your passwords and data.
  • Pay in advance which pressures you to wire or transfer an upfront fee to receive money, a prize, or goods you weren’t expecting, start a free trial, or process an online application for a dummy loan or job. Once paid, the fraudster – and your fee - are gone forever.
  • Pay yourself (using Zelle®) which often comes as a text alert about a fraudulent Zelle® transfer. If you respond to it, a fraudster calls appearing as your financial institution. They say you can recover the stolen funds by transferring the same amount “back to your Zelle® account.” You’re instructed to provide a security code and re-link your mobile number, while the scammer connects your details to their own account. Then, money you think you’re sending to yourself is sent directly to their bank account.

Contacted Out of the Blue? Heres What To Do: Slow down and call back to verify

Contact your financial institution directly. To discuss any suspicious activity, call the number listed on your debit card, in your banking app, or on your institution’s official website.

Don’t give out full account numbers, PINs, or verification codes. Premier America and other legitimate financial institutions will never text, email, or call you and ask for these.

Avoid links and attachments unless you’re certain they’re from a trusted source. When in doubt, close it out, and visit the official website or Online Banking app directly. Never respond to demands for payment by gift card, wire, or money transfer, not even to yourself!


How Safe is Online Banking?

Our Online Banking and Mobile App protect your information using advanced data encryption and the latest fraud detection measures that help safeguard your account.

Always use a strong password and two-factor authentication and do your online banking from home or your device’s mobile app. Whenever possible, do not connect to public wi-fi when conducting your Online Banking. Be sure to monitor your account regularly. If you spot suspicious activity, please contact Premier America at (800) 772-4000 or visit a local branch near you.