Thursday, May 15, 2014

BBB: Debit card phone/text scam – think don’t act

Roanoke, VA (May 15, 2014) – BBB is issuing an alert on a debit card phone scam that has been making its way across the country. Residents in Alaska, Florida, Idaho, and Missouri have all reported being contacted via phone calls and text messages from someone claiming to represent their bank asking for personal information.

The con may come in the form of either a phone call or a text message. The phone call features an automated voice claiming that the consumer’s debit card has been deactivated and to press 1 to reactivate. Then the voice asks for the debit card number. Consumers report that the text message stated that their credit card or debit card had been deactivated, and to call a local area code number to re-activate.  A recording then asked for a 16-digit credit card number, expiration date, CVV code (card security code) and PIN.

BBB Serving Western VA is warning Virginia residents about the scam before they begin receiving these phone calls and text messages.

“Your bank will never call you with an automated phone number, or send you a text message saying that your card has been deactivated,” says Julie Wheeler, President and CEO of BBB Serving Western VA. “Just remember that your bank already has your personal information and banking numbers. If you receive any suspicious call or message from someone purporting to be your bank, hang up and call your bank directly.”

Follow these BBB tips:

  • Don’t panic. Scam artists count on their victims making a rushed decision. Take a deep breath and pause before acting on, or responding to, any suspicious phone call or text message.
  • Never give out any financial information, such as your bank account, credit card or Social Security numbers over the phone.
  • Think about what you’re being told. If a caller claims to be with your bank or your credit card company and wants your account information so they can verify it, they aren’t telling the truth; your bank and your credit card company already have this information.
  • Listen closely. If the caller uses poor grammar and/or has a heavy accent, be on alert. Many fraudulent calls originate overseas.
  • Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t seem right to you, end the call or ask the caller to call back later, after you’ve had time to research their claims.
  • Don’t rely on caller ID. Scammers can use technology to make it appear as though their calls are coming from legitimate businesses.
  • Start with Trust! Contact the BBB first by going to or by calling (800) 533-5501

The BBB is a nonprofit, business-supported organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. The BBB provides objective advice, free BBB Business Reviews on more than 4 million companies, 11,000 charity reviews, dispute resolution service, alerts and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust. Please visit for more information.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Community



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