Many local and Kansas state banks are warning customers of recent texting and debit cards scams happening in the area. Banks do not text you regarding debit cards or account information. According to information from the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Network, there was an 89% increase in the number of credit card fraud reports filed with the agency during the first two quarters of 2020, compared with 2019. The variety of ways credit card scammers are gaining access to consumers’ banking and credit card accounts is also increasing.
The five most common ways scammers receive your personal information is through the promise of lower interest rates, overcharged and fraudulent purchases, requests for charity assistance, skimming and E-Skimming, and card cracking. The FTC reminds everyone to never give out sensitive personal information to unexpected callers. If you’re unsure whether a phone call is legitimate, you can always call the Customer Service number on the back of your credit card to ensure you’re speaking with your financial institution and not an imposter.
Monitor your credit card activity regularly by logging into your account online, or by using a smartphone app. You may also want to sign up to receive automated text notifications – if offered by your financial institution – to quickly alert you of particular account situations, such as transactions over a certain value or whenever your account balance goes below a specified level. And, if you see charges you don’t recognize, alert the issuer immediately to place a block on your account, dispute unauthorized charges, and request a new credit card. Vet charities that contact you by performing a Google search or by using a service such as the IRS’ Tax-Exempt Organization Search or Charity Navigator. Avoid sliding your card in a reader that has any of the telltale signs of skimming. These include a card reader that looks different from others at the same location, a reader that appears loose or tampered with, or a reader with additional devices attached near the card slot. Never give your card or card information to anyone offering you quick cash, and never open an account in your name for another person to use.
If you do become a victim of a credit or debit card scam or suspect that you have, report it immediately to your local authorities, the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center and/or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).