If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from your bank, you might be wondering how to tell if it is a legitimate call or a scam. Scammers often use spoofed phone numbers, fake caller IDs, and convincing scripts to trick you into revealing your personal or financial information. Here are some tips on how to tell if a call from your bank is legitimate.
Don't give out any information unless you initiated the call.
If the caller asks you to verify your account number, PIN, password, security code, or any other sensitive information, don't provide it. Your bank already has this information and will never ask you to confirm it over the phone. If you initiated the call to your bank, you might be asked to verify some information for security purposes, but only after you have dialed the official number yourself.
Be wary of urgent or threatening messages.
Scammers often try to create a sense of urgency or fear by claiming that your account has been compromised, that there is a problem with your card, or that you need to take immediate action to avoid penalties or fees. These are tactics to pressure you into giving up your information or making a payment. A legitimate bank representative will never behave this way and will always give you time to verify their identity and the validity of their request.
Don't click on any links or attachments in unsolicited emails or texts.
Scammers might also try to contact you via email or text message, pretending to be from your bank and asking you to click on a link or open an attachment. These links or attachments might contain malware that can infect your device and steal your information. They might also lead you to a fake website that looks like your bank's, but is designed to capture your login credentials. If you receive an email or text from your bank that you are not expecting, don't click on anything and delete it immediately. If you want to check your account status, go directly to your bank's website or app and log in there.
Report any suspicious calls, emails, or texts to your bank.
If you suspect that you have received a scam call, email, or text from someone pretending to be from your bank, report it to your bank as soon as possible.
Remember, your bank will never contact you out of the blue and ask for your personal or financial information over the phone, email, or text. If you are ever in doubt about the legitimacy of a call from your bank, hang up and call them back using the number found on your bank’s website or the back of your debit card. By following these tips, you can avoid falling prey to scammers and keep your money safe.