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Smishing attacks members across the country
MADISON, Wis. (7/25/11)--Financial institutions--including credit unions--from around the country have been reporting for several days that their customers and members are being "smished" with bogus text messages claiming to be from bank or credit union related services. The messages attempt to con the recipient into divulging sensitive financial information, such as credit card and banking account numbers. They advise the recipients their card has been deactivated and to to call a number listed in the message to reactivate the card. In some cases, the recipients, including credit union members, have called the number and provided the requested information (stgnews.com, 11news.com and GoDanRiver.com July 21). In credit unions' case, the bogus text message says it is from "Credit Union Services," said a scam alert from CUNA Mutual Group that did not name any credit unions whose members received such messages (Daily Exchange July 22). A number of banks also have been targeted in both phishing and smishing attacks. In Southern Utah, many people received phone calls and text messages the past few days from someone claiming to represent Wells Fargo bank (stgnews.com July 21). The text messages use a variety of telephone numbers, including numbers from legitimate businesses, which makes it harder to shut down the bogus text messenger.
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