Man in the Middle Scam

If you’ve received a call from your financial institution about a fraud warning, you probably felt a sense of urgency to find out what is going on, but with a ‘Man in the Middle’ scam, it's going to be very important to take a deep breath and think twice before giving out identifying information.

These scams frequently begin with a phone call from what appears to be your financial institution. Reporter Ashlei King received such a call and recounted her experience:

“A woman on the other end told me they noticed fraudulent activity on my checking account. Something about the call seemed off, so I asked her to verify that she was actually with my bank. The caller told me she would be sending a text message to me shortly with a code so I could verify she's with the bank. I got that text, which is normal for my bank, so I continued talking with her. What I didn't know at the time was the caller was likely talking to my bank on another phone and pretending to be me at the same time they were talking with me.”

Everything seemed legitimate at the time, but after checking her account once the call had ended, King noticed that hundreds of dollars had been withdrawn from her account using an ATM.

What you can do to protect yourself:

  • If you get a call from someone claiming to be with your financial institution, hang up and call the financial institution back directly using a verified phone number.
  • If you get an e-mail that appears to be from the financial institution, do NOT click on any links. Go directly to the financial institution’s website on your own.
  • Protect your online account with a strong password, and if you have online banking, use a two-factor authentication for signing into your account.
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