5 Tips to Avoid Sneaky Scams from Rogue Credit Union
5 Tips to Avoid Sneaky Scams
The holidays are here, and you know what that means: Hot cocoa, time with loved ones…and the Grinch! Don’t let fraudsters and would-be-holiday-cheer-stealers get you down this season. Instead, follow our advice to avoid this year’s top holiday scams!
Tip #1: Pay Your Bills Online
Lately, porch pirates have been stealing not only the packages on your porch but the letters in your mailbox. Keep checks out of the mail by paying your bills online or, if absolutely necessary, dropping off mailed checks and valuables in-person at your local post office. Rogue offers free online Bill Pay services. To set up Bill Pay, login to Online Banking, click “Pay Bills” and follow the instructions.
Tip #2: Double Check Your Delivery Notifications
If you receive an email or text notification for a delivery you aren’t expecting, it could be a scam! Be careful not to click any links, call any phone numbers or respond to any messages in suspicious delivery notifications. If you’re getting a package delivered and aren’t sure about its status, reach out directly to the postal or delivery service. Find their phone number online, through Google, instead of using the number provided in the suspicious message. You can also request the delivery require a signature or have the package delivered to an alternate sure location, such as your work.
Tip #3: Watch Out for Fake Charities
Scammers will do their best to take advantage of the season of giving. Before you donate to a charity, do some homework! Look for proof of the charity’s nonprofit status through the IRS’ Tax Exempt Organization Search Tool. If a charity ever demands an immediate payment, that’s a red flag! A real charitable organization will accept your donation at any time. Also, watch out for scam-charities asking you to pay by wire transfer, gift card or cryptocurrency.
Tip #4: Skip the Social Media Ads
Some scammers create social media ads that look real but lead to fake websites. Even if a product photo or targeted ad looks real, keep in mind that the product website may be a shell website or other fake site. If you see an ad for an item or service that you’re interested in, you can always make a note of the product and company name and use that information to look it up later.
Tip #5: When in Doubt, Don’t Reply
Especially with advancements in artificial intelligence, including tools like ChatGPT, scam texts and calls look and sound more realistic than they ever have before. If you receive a text or call that seem suspicious, the best thing you can do is ignore it. To confirm the validity of a text or call, separately look up the phone number of the person or organization and contact them. Don’t reply to the message! At Rogue Credit Union, we’ll never call or text you to ask for sensitive personal information. If you’re ever unsure of a message, give us a call at 800.856.7328.