What You Should Know About “Vishing”
What is vishing?
The term vishing comes from mixing "voice" with "phishing," which are scams that intend to trick consumers into supplying personal information usually financial in nature. Vishing is the term for stealing information or money from consumers over the telephone.
How does vishing work?
Usually the thief will use caller ID spoofing, which makes the telephone network display a number from a legitimate or well-known source, when in fact that is not where the call originated. This is very similar to e-mail spoofing, which makes e-mails look like they are coming from a trusted source.
Vishing attacks usually have an automated recording setup to call a consumer telling them that their credit card(s) or ATM/Debit Card has been flagged for fraudulent activity. The recording then asks the consumer to provide a card number, PIN code, and/or Social Security number to verify their account, or the recording provides a toll-free number directing the consumer to call and provide account details.
Note: Michigan Schools and Government Credit Union will never ask you for personal information via e-mail. You will never be asked to provide your full social security number, VISA card number, account number, or PIN through e-mail.
What can you do to protect yourself?
- Be suspicious of all unknown callers. You should be just as suspicious of phone calls as you are of e-mails asking for personal information.
- Do not trust caller ID. Just because your caller ID displays a phone number or name of a legitimate company, it does not guarantee the call is really coming from that number.
- Call them back. If someone is selling you something or asking for information, tell them you will call them back. Verify the company is legitimate by calling them back using a telephone number from a bill, statement, or other trustworthy source – rather than what they provided you in the call.
- Register your number. Visit the National Do Not Call registry at www.donotcall.gov. If you are on the list and receive a call from a suspected telemarketer, this could be a tip that the offer is fake.
- Report incidents. Report vishing calls to www.ftc.gov or call 888.382.1222 . The FTC would like to know the number and name that appeared on your caller ID, as well as the time of day and the information discussed or heard in a recorded message.
It is all part of setting things right for yourself and protecting your path to financial success.
Reardon, Marguerite. “Protect Yourself From Vishing Attacks.” CNet News. 19 May 2009 <http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-10244200-94.html>