FDIC Warns Consumers About Fraudulent Emails, Phone Calls

FDIC Warns Consumers About Fraudulent Emails, Phone Calls
  • Opening Intro -

    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has been tracking a series of scams over the past year involving fake emails or phone calls from people purporting to represent the FDIC.

    This federal agency is tasked with preserving and promoting consumer confidence in the U.S. financial system, by insuring deposits at member banks and thrift institutions; limits may apply.

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Because of the agency’s highly visible roll in all things financial, it is frequently targeted as a way to scam unsuspecting consumers who may think that they are dealing with a legitimate source when an email is received or phone conversation takes place.

Fraudulent Activities

Since April 2010, the FDIC has reported six incidents of suspicious activity, five involving emails. The latest notice was posted on March 11, 2011, where the FDIC warned consumers about emails claiming to come from the FDIC. Those emails are sent from “accounts@fdic.gov” and includes a line that states: “About your business account.”

Emails are addressed to “Business Customers” in general (not by your business account, specifically) and states, “We have important information about insurance coverage of your business accounts.” Recipients are then instructed to click on a link for further information, an action that takes people to a website not controlled by the FDIC. Emails are addressed from “Alyssa Williams, FDIC Insurance.”

Clicking Dangers

As with other emails, the FDIC states that the message and the link are fraudulent. Clicking on the link may download malicious software to your computer or allow the fraud perpetrator to collect personal and confidential information from you without your knowledge. Avoid clicking on links; delete the email at once to avoid trouble.

The FDIC states that it “does not issue unsolicited emails to consumers or business account holders,” a policy government agencies routinely follow including the IRS.  If there is a reason for the FDIC to contact you it would be by mail.

For additional information about FDIC deposit insurance coverage, go to www.fdic.gov/deposit/deposits or call 1-877-275-3342 to talk to an FDIC Deposit Insurance Specialist. Also, see Certificate of Deposit: Tips for Savers at www.fdic.gov/deposit/deposits/certificate.

Resource

FDIC; Consumer Alerts; March 11, 2011

 

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Categories: Consumer Tips