“Cash this check. Keep the change.” Don’t fall for a common scam.

November 17, 2017 | Millie Garland-D'Aprile

Photo of a woman tapping online security icons.

We all like to know we’re safe, and that includes financial safety too. The holiday season is a time to enjoy the cool outdoors, visit family and get some great deals on a lot of items. It’s also the time of year when financial scammers tend to get busy. It’s easy to get distracted and let your guard down when shopping in stores and online, and unfortunately, thieves and scammers are waiting to take advantage of this busy shopping season.

Protecting your money is a priority at Mission Fed, so we’ve built in proactive security technologies to prevent attempts to get your information or funds. We use firewalls to protect against hackers, identity theft and malicious programs that may impact security. We also use modern encryption methods for Online and Mobile Banking to help keep your username, password and confidential information safe.

While Mission Fed is working hard to keep our security protections in place, there are things you can do to help our safety measures work even better, like looking for scams. Common scams can include:

“Cash this check. Keep the change.”

If you think getting paid to cash a check and wire some money sounds too good to be true, you’re right. The scammer sends you a counterfeit check which you deposit and then wire your real money back to them. Unfortunately, you won’t know the check is a fake until it’s too late.

“I love you. Please send money.”

There are no rules in love and war, and that applies especially to scammers who prey on people in online dating or family-member-in-need situations. If you have never met someone in person, be hesitant to send them money, regardless of how well you know them online. And if a distant relative is in need of help, it’s best to talk to other family members about the situation before sending any money. Whatever you do, never send anyone your personal or account information.

“I need to cash a check. What’s your login?”

Some people get taken advantage of by mobile check cashing scams, either trying to be helpful or thinking it’s a way to make some easy money. Your “friend” is really a scammer who is going to deposit counterfeit checks or checks from an account with no funds into your account. You give them the cash and then find out a few days later that the checks are no good. All of the sudden, your “friend” is nowhere to be found.

Email phishing scams

Phishing scams are all too familiar these days, and it can be easy to fall for these tricky emails. Knowing what to look out for and how to protect yourself can save you from giving personal or financial information to cyber criminals. It’s okay to be suspicious, so know when to contact an organization directly to find out if they really sent the message.

Scammers are out there, and knowledge is power! Learn more online about keeping your identity safe and how Mission Fed works hard to keep our members’ information safe. Visit your local branch, apply online or by phone at 800.500.6328 to open an account and start banking more securely today.

The content provided in this blog consists of the opinions and ideas of the author alone and should be used for informational purposes only. Mission Federal Credit Union disclaims any liability for decisions you make based on the information provided. References to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name in this article by Mission Federal Credit Union is for the information and convenience of its readers and does not constitute endorsement, control or warranty by Mission Federal Credit Union.

Millie Garland-D'Aprile

Millie Garland-D'Aprile

Millie Garland-D’Aprile is VP Operations at Mission Federal Credit Union. She has enjoyed several decades of customer service and operations experience in the financial industry, including 22 years at a local community bank and 18 years with Credit Unions. Millie’s primary responsibilities at Mission Fed include branch support, quality assurance, asset protection and fraud, and she is always delighted to share her experience and insights with colleagues throughout the Credit Union. Millie and her team have been working to help protect members by increasing fraud awareness.

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