Tuesday, July 25, 2023

"Pay Yourself" scams

In general, no bank will ever ask you to send money in order to resolve or reverse fraud on your account.

Any text message, phone call, or email stating that it is from your bank and asking you to send money by wire or pay via Zelle, CashApp, Venmo, Apple gift cards, PayPal, or any other forms of payment for a service that you do not remember or recognize or solve an issue in your account it is a scam.

Try to stay safe by:

  1. Knowing the person, you're talking to. If you are not comfortable with the questions or information being asked, or you're feeling that something is not right, trust your intuition and hang up the phone before providing such information as full names, phone number, bank account number, debit number, credit number with 3-digit verification number, username, password, verification code from a text message or from your 2-factor authentication app (2FA). Go to your account and check the number (can also be found on your statements) for your financial institution provider and call them directly. This is also a good habit that can be applied to any suspicious form of communication even if it doesn't involve money at first.
  2. Take a deep breath and think through. Scammers may take time to persuade you into doing something, but usually most of them will create a sense of urgency and trigger your emotions so that you react without thinking thoroughly. They use this method to force you into doing something without realizing it at the moment. 
  3. Don't send money before you know for sure why you're sending money and why. Some trained or experienced bank employees may be able to spot a scam and try to warn you. Stop and listen to them even if the scammer told you not to. They may help you save your money.