GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — ‘Tis the season for scammers trying to ruin your holiday.
More and more, they’re turning to text messages to take your money and identity. The latest example is a phishing scam that tries to hook Lake Michigan Credit Union customers. Scam texts claiming to be from LMCU warn recipients their account is “under review” or ask them to confirm a large purchase at Best Buy.
“If you very quickly look at it and it says, ‘There’s a problem with your bank account, click here,’ you might be inclined to actually click there,” the Better Business Bureau of West Michigan’s Troy Baker said.
But you shouldn’t.
Scammers can create a webpage that looks like it’s from your credit union or bank’s website. Once you sign in, they’ve got your password and access to your real account.
“So contacting your bank, changing your passwords, making sure you’re locking those scammers out is the steps you need to take,” Baker said.
Scams used to come in a phone call or an email but increasingly, scammers are targeting their prey with text messages.
“(Scammers are) not dumb,” Baker said. “They find interesting ways to work around the fixes that come up. So as phone companies do better job of filtering out the phone calls, they shift to text messages which are easier to get to you at.”
There was no word from LMCU Monday on how many customers were targeted or how much money scammers got.
And while it’s LMCU customers today, it could be any credit union, bank or other business tomorrow.
“This is the type of scam that, whether it’s Lake Michigan Credit Union or another organization, those scammers cycle through to try to hit everybody,” Baker said.
If you do get scammed and it’s connected to your bank or credit union, you may or may not get reimbursed.
“That’s why the best advice for a consumer is take your time,” Baker said. “Look at it and when in doubt, reach out to your bank.”