Building Strength With Security
Person to Person (P2P) Payment Scams
Your Bank Won’t Ask You to “Pay Yourself”. Citadel Credit Union monitors your accounts 24/7 for suspicious activity, and we update you immediately if something is detected. In addition, we’re dedicated to keeping you informed about any new security threats or scams targeted at consumers.
Recently an old scam with a new look has started making the rounds. The “Pay Yourself Scam” uses a fake fraud alert that appears to be from your financial institution, tricking you into giving scammers access to your finances.
- You receive a text message that looks like a fraud alert about unusual activity. If you respond to the text, you receive a call from a number that appears to be from your financial institution.
- The person posing as a representative will ask you to send money to yourself with an online payment app (Zelle, Venmo, etc.)
- The scammer will then ask you for a one-time code you just received from a bank. If you give them the code, they will use it to enroll their bank account with an online payment app using your email or phone number.
- The scammer now can receive your money into their account.
Don’t Be Fooled By Fraudsters
Before you respond to ANY fraud alert, stop. A legitimate financial institution will never pressure or harass you into action. Messaging that seems aggressive or demanding is usually an indication of fraud. Scammers depend on fear and uncertainty to get their victims to act quickly, without thinking. Taking the time to question these alerts and follow up directly with your financial institution can prevent you from falling for a scam.
Being prepared is your best defense. To learn what to do with a suspicious message, read What to Do If You Get a Phishing Text.
Find out How to Identify & Avoid Fraud AttacksLearn More
What to Watch For
It’s not hard to spoof text messages or phone numbers to make them appear legitimate. The only way to be sure you’re in touch with the real financial institution is to call a number you know belongs to them, from the website, your banking documents, or the back of a credit card.
Do not call any numbers or hotlines provided to you or give out information on a call you did not initiate.
Legitimate banks or other financial institutions will never contact you asking for your PIN, checking account number, or any other information it already has. Whether it’s a text, phone call, or email, it’s safe to assume that requests for this type of information are fraudulent.
But it may be hard to remember that in the moment, as the element of fear is a major part of a scam’s success. Where your finances and personal information are concerned, clicking on a link or responding to a text right now may seem to be the right course of action. But taking a moment or two to think things through and follow up directly with the financial institution is your safest bet.
Report Text Message Scams
- Contact a representative from Citadel's Member Care Team.
- Copy the message and forward it to 7726 (SPAM).
- Report it to the Federal Trade Commission at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.