Phishing is a computer related scam which involves the use of spam email, or pop-up messages to steal personal information from unsuspecting victims. The email or pop-up may claim to be from a business or organization you deal with, such as a financial institution, Internet service provider, or a government agency. These messages usually adopt an urgent tone asking you to “confirm,” “update,” or “validate” your account information. The messages will direct you to a website which appears to be a legitimate organization’s site, but it isn’t. The sole purpose of this site is to scam you into divulging personal information. The operators then utilize this information to steal your identity and run up bills or commit crimes in your name.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) offers the following tips to avoid falling victim to a phishing scam:
- Do not reply to email or pop-up messages which ask for personal or financial information. Do not click links in the message, and do not cut and paste links from the message.
- Do not call phone numbers listed in these messages.
- Use anti-virus and anti-spyware software, and update them regularly
- Do not email personal or financial information
- Review credit card and account statements as soon as you receive them
- Be cautious about opening any attachment or downloading files from emails
If you are concerned about your account, contact the organization directly by a telephone number you know to be genuine, or open a new Web browser session and type in the company’s correct Web address. Crane Federal Credit Union’s toll free number is 800-692-3274, and Web address is www.cranecu.org .
If you believe you have been the victim of a phishing scam, please refer to our Identity Theft guidelines, or the FTC's Identity Theft site.