Phishing scams seem to be all around us and they happen all the time to unsuspecting and trustful individuals. A phishing scam will allow for your identity to be stolen and it can also lead to stealing of your credit card information along with your bank account information as well. Usually a phishing scam will come in the form of an email or an instant message from someone like a bank saying you need to verify your email address or your personal information. Many times they will come in the form of a hacker saying something about how your account has been hacked and you need to sign into verify the information in your account and to make sure you didn’t make these charges.
The criminals that are behind phishing scams will use all sorts of methods to get people to give up their account information. It is very important to understand what type of bank you are working with and to find out how they contact their customers. Typically banks will not contact you via email except to notify you that your account statement is ready or to let you know that your payment has been applied to the account. Most banks and credit card companies have a policy that they will not send emails that ask you to verify your personal information so forth. This is how phishing scams work and how so many criminals gain access to your accounts.
If you do get an email from a phishing scam, you will likely see that it looks very real. It will look a lot like an email you get from your bank but you should check the email address since it is common for the email address to be very different from the one that your bank has used. The banks that commonly get attacked by phishing scams include the following:
- Bank Of America
There are others that also get attacked and it literally can be any bank you have so it’s important to monitor these messages. Even the best online email account settings cannot protect you from all of the phishing scams that are out there. Then there is also the virus programs that you have and the fact that they cannot always keep you safe from phishing scams and other scams.
If you do happen to get an email from a bank asking you to verify your account, open a separate window browser and log into the account that you have saved in your favorites or look for the actual website on the back of your credit card. This will allow you to create an account or sign into an existing one and then you can see if you have any messages from the bank. If there is a concern, it will be addressed on this page or you will likely get a phone call from your lender or you may even get a letter in the mail that informs you that there is a concern with your account.
Email phishing scams often include letters from people you know saying that they are in trouble and need you to forward large sums of money to them. You may get an email from your financial advisor that says you need to wire money within the day to get a stock that will perform well. Never ever submit money to anyone that sends an email or to someone that claims to be your relative and needs to have large sums of money send to them. These are likely going to be a phishing scam and you need to proceed with caution and try contacting the real person to find out what is happening.