"Smishing" and "Phishing"
"Smishing" and "Phishing" Alert
Please note: FedChoice will never contact you by phone, text or email to request personal or account information, such as debit/credit card number(s), social security number(s), account number(s), etc.
At this point in time, you are unable to activate a FedChoice debit card online which is what the lastest phishing attempt offers you the opportunity to do. While the website does look like the new fedchoice.org, if take a moment to review, you'll notice that no links are able to be clicked other than "Update" which will submit your information to the scammers. Also, the web address points to an entirely different website!
FedChoice makes every effort to keep our members informed about scams and the many ways that thieves will attempt to steal account information. Please be aware that FedChoice has been fraudulently referenced in recent text message smishing and e-mail phishing scams which have been received by members and non-members alike.
REMEMBER – FEDCHOICE HAS NOT AND WILL NOT ASK YOU FOR INFORMATION VIA TEXT MESSAGE OR E-MAIL. Our IT department is diligently working to have the phone numbers and e-mail addresses shut down to protect our member’s information. The fraudulent text and e-mail messages contain an “alert” that an ATM/Debit card or some other service has been suspended, or that "unusual activity" has occurred, and urges the recipient to call the phone number listed or complete a form to provide account details to reactivate the account or card. This use of text or e-mail messaging to illegally collect sensitive information is called “smishing” (text messages) or "phishing" (e-mail).
If you have responded to one of these messages by providing the information that is requested, please contact the financial institution that issued the card so that your account may be assessed for fraudulent activity. Steps may then be put in place to help mitigate any resulting damage.
Watch for the following clues to determine if a communication appears to be fraudulent:
Contains an incorrect/unfamiliar web address and/or email address
Includes an attachment for an unknown source
References a "secure" page but the web address does not include "https"
Account holders are referred to as customers; not members
Account activity at a financial institution where you do not even have an account is referenced
For everyone who has reported these scams to us – thank you for questioning the authenticity of these messages. When we hear from concerned individuals such as yourselves – members and nonmembers alike – it is extremely helpful to us as we work to identify and shut down these scammers. FedChoice will never contact you by phone, text or email to request personal or account information, such as credit card number(s), social security number(s), account number(s), etc. We already have this account information on file.
Thank you for your understanding as we work to shut down the phone numbers and email addresses associated with this latest series of scams.