Beware of Calls Claiming a Debit Card Has Been Frozen

  
     
April 17, 2017

BBB of North Alabama has received a report from a local consumer regarding an automated system claiming that a debit card had been frozen. The automated message does not specify which debit card is frozen and prompts the consumer to press 1 during the call. The scammer is using a number assigned to Clarksville, Tennessee to bait consumers to pick up. The number is (931) 218-7737.

 This is most definitely a phishing scam. While this number is new, the scam is not. Phishing scams of this nature go on all the time. No bank or credit card company will use an automated message or robo-call to contact you about a problem with your account. If you did have a problem and the bank needed to contact you, they typically do so in writing first. If you do call the number back, you may be asked to provide or "verify" account or other personally identifiable information. Doing so puts you at risk for significant financial loss as well as identity theft. You've also confirmed that you are a "live" mark for any other would-be scammer.

 What to do?

 Just hang up. If you are concerned about your account, contact your bank or credit card number directly using a number from a bank or CC statement - not the number left in the automated message. If a consumer has already given personal information to the scammer, here's what to do:

  • Contact the three Credit Reporting agencies – Transunion, Equifax, and Experian – to place a fraud alert on all your account. 
  • Notify your bank and credit card companies of your situation.
  • If you normally do online banking or manage your credit card accounts online, place alerts on each account so that you will be notified by email or text of any transaction, based on the parameters you set. This will help you spot fraudulent activity on your accounts right away so you can take action quickly.
  • For additional assistance, go to identitytheft.gov