Ring, Ring, It’s Not Who You Think.

From phone calls, robocalls and text messages, scams over the phone are one of the top ways fraudsters swindle Americans with over 1.7 million incidents reported for 2019. In fact, the FTC reported that Ohioans lost over $32.3 million from fraud in 2019. Premier Bank wants to arm you with the knowledge on how to avoid common scams and what to do if you become a victim.

Some of the Top Phone Scams in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana include: 

  • Coronavirus Scams – According to the FTC, Ohio ranks as the ninth highest state for Coronavirus scams attempted. Here is what you should know:  

    • Check is in the mail – Be wary of providing your personal information over the phone to people who claim to be the IRS and other government agencies. The IRS or government will typically send a letter before calling you. Visit IRS.gov for more ways to identify if a call from a government is real.
    • For a good cause – When giving to an organization you are passionate about doing your research to make sure it helps those intended is important. Several websites can help you check the validity of nonprofits such as https://charitycheck101.org/. Using a credit card or check is safest.
    • Doctors Notes – Beware of offers for vaccines and treatments for the Coronavirus. Medical companies will not solicit these products. Stay up to date on the latest Coronavirus news by vising CDC.gov.  
       
  • Bank Scams – It is important to remember that Premier Bank, or any other financial organization, will NEVER contact you to ask for your account number, card number, password, or PIN.  Familiarize yourself with some of these common scams to protect your sensitive information.
    • Be alert - People call claiming to alert you concerning fraud and ask for you to confirm your account numbers or private information. If this happens to you, hang up and call your bank’s customer service number found on their website.
    • Accounts closed – Fraudsters will call claiming your bank has been closed or acquired. They ask that you transfer to a new account. Your bank will not ask for your account information over the phone and typically will first send you a letter.
       
  • Other common scams – While there are 100s of attempts of fraud, here are other common ways to help you prevent fraud for yourself and your loved ones:
    • Grandparents scam - Scammers often claim that they are a grandchild or other family member and want to avoid getting into trouble with their parents and want the grandparents to keep this a secret. Never send money or gift cards unless you confirm the situation with another family member. 
    • Too good to be true – Callers claim that you have won the lottery or big prize, all you have to do is pay a fee upfront. This is a common scam to gain your credit card information. If the offer is too good to be true – it probably is.

Protecting yourself

Premier Bank uses the latest technology to protect and monitor against fraud. If we suspect fraud on your debit card or business credit card, we will alert you in a timely matter.

Here are a few ways you can add an additional layer of protection:

  1. Enroll in Online Banking and download our app to review your transactions regularly and identify withdrawals you didn’t make.
  2. Use Card Controls to limit debit card use by access by location, merchant category and transaction type.
  3. Should you temporarily misplace your debit card, turn your card on and off within the Premier Bank app with Card Controls.
  4. Add your debit card to your mobile wallets for a more secure transaction at your favorite retailers.
  5. Review other helpful tips and tricks on the Premier Bank blog.

If you suspect you have become a victim of fraud, call 877-367-8178 or visit any branch and follow these five steps to resolving fraud. You can also file complaints by visiting the Federal Trade Commission, which maintains a database of identity theft cases and problems other victim’s experience.

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