Monroe Community CU and Monroe Area FCU, both in Monroe, Mich., reported that vishers have contacted their members, asking for personal financial information. Vishers contact victims by an automated phone dialer, with the intention of soliciting personal financial information from them by telling them that their credit cards have been used illegally or suspended (Michigan Monitor Jan. 22).
Some vishers have "spoof" caller identification, so members may see the name of their credit union on the identification, but there is no guarantee that the call is legitimate, said Todd Mason, CU Village president and chief operating officer.
Credit unions with broad fields of membership, such as Monroe, are targeted because the odds of finding a real credit union member when making random phone calls are high. Credit unions need to reinforce and repeat the message to their members that they should not share personal account information over the phone or online, Mason said.
The Pennsylvania Credit Union Association (PCUA) also received calls from credit unions saying their members had received e-mails from the DOJ. The e-mails tell recipients they have been the subject of complaints filed with the DOJ and forwarded to the Internal Revenue Service. The e-mails contain an attachment with the alleged complaint, according to the association (Life is a Highway Jan. 22).
The DOJ is urging recipients not to open attachments because they may contain malicious software. The agency also has placed an alert on its website stating that the e-mail messages are fraudulent and should be deleted.