Teach your staff how to help members avoid some key traps this summer.
Fraudsters design their scams to get people’s attention—and later their money. Here are three things that First Line of Defense is teaching credit union staff people this summer so they can better prepare members to avoid losses.
1. Watch Out for Quick Cash Offers for Selling Your Home
If a member is talking about signs promoting a quick home sale, encourage them to speak to someone from the credit union who knows about home sales. Many such ads are not scams, but companies posting such signs may be using deceptive tactics to take advantage of vulnerable homeowners by undervaluing their home.
2. Be Careful When Email Subject Lines Say You Have an Outstanding Payment
“Your package could not be delivered due to an outstanding payment of $2.34.” If you get an email with a subject line like this, discourage members from clicking through to see the links inside the email; they are likely fraudulent! Clicking those links might lead to malware being loaded onto their computer or phone. Malware could also be presented to look like a trustworthy email attachment (such as an offer or bank statement). But opening a malware attachment could cause real problems, including paralyzing entire computer systems.
3. Beware of Fake Job Offers
One way scammers prey on unsuspecting job seekers is to take outdated ads from real employers, change them and post them on job sites like Indeed or LinkedIn. A fraudster’s goal with this kind of scam is to trick the potential victim into sharing personal information. Some fraudulent job postings ask for information like Social Security or account numbers with the stated purpose of being able to deposit the member’s “salary” from the job. You can help members know if the employer they’re working with online is perpetrating fraud. Encourage them to take these kinds of steps:
- Verify job openings are real before applying. Visit the company’s official website and look in the “career opportunities” or “jobs” section.
- Google the opportunity. Tell members to use a search string with the company name and such words as “scam,” “review” or “complaint.” The results may be telling.
Lisa Hochgraf is CUES’ senior editor.