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We have engaged FORVIS, LLP (Attn: Jeff Rosno, 1801 California Street , Ste. 2900, Denver, CO 80202) to perform member verifications. Kindly compare the balance of your accounts on your December 2022 statement WITH YOUR RECORDS. If balances do not agree, please address your discrepancies directly to FORVIS, LLP. Include your name, truncated account number, and an explanation of the difference noted.  A reply is not considered necessary unless a difference is noted.

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3 Imposter Scams You Should Be On The Lookout For


Most people are aware they should not send money to a stranger, which is why fraudsters often take different tacks, pretending to be a person or company with whom you may be familiar.  To stay vigilant and avoid becoming a victim, it is important to understand how these imposter scams work.

The scammer’s aim is to get you to let your guard down. The scammers make you believe scenarios while impersonating someone, to make you feel more comfortable.  They often ask you to do something you should not, such as buying gift cards, and providing the information on the cards to a third party or sending a deposit to yourself.

Some scammers have even been using artificial intelligence to mimic friends or family members voices, making it difficult to tell if the outreach is genuine.  What’s more, imposter scams are currently the number-one most reported type of scam, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and losses are mounting.  People reported losing $2.6 billion to imposters in 2022, an increase from $2.4 billion the previous year.

To protect your finances and avoid becoming a victim, here is what you need to know about three common imposter scams, including advice on how to steer clear of them.

Bank Imposter Scam

How they work:  A fraudster pretending to be a financial institution agent contacts you in one of the following ways:

  1. Texts you from a spoofed number that appears to be a legitimate number for your financial institution, advising you of suspicious account activity, such as a fraudulent transaction, from the “FRAUD DEPT”. Once you reply, the scammer either calls you or provides a number for you to call.
  2. Emails you from a spoofed email address by altering the “display name”, so it appears to be a legitimate name or address for your financial institution, to advise you of suspicious account activity, such as a fraudulent transaction, from the “FRAUD DEPT”. Once you reply, the scammer either calls you or provides a number for you to call, or the original email may contain a link to a spoofed website with a fake chat feature run by the scammer.
  3. Calls you directly to advise of suspicious activity on your account. Typically, while in contact with you, the scammer is also interacting with the financial institution, either through the mobile application or on the phone with a bank representative, such as “FRAUD DEPT”. The purpose is to either conduct a financial transaction on your account and have you authenticate it or to convince you to conduct the financial transaction under false pretenses. The scammer might say your funds are at risk due to fraudulent activity, and they need you to move your funds to “protect” them. What’s really happening is you’re transferring the funds to a third-party account they control, stealing your money.

    Some fraudsters will even ask you for the one-time password (OTP) just delivered to your phone or email; with that, they can change the password and provide you with a new one for the online banking session. By showing you they have the ability to reset your password, their goal is to make you believe the scam is legitimate. Once they have access to your online account, they will change your password, move money around from your savings account to checking, then set up peer-to-peer transfers out of your account to an account they have control of, once again, stealing your money.

What can you do:

Be cautious.  A real financial institution will never call, email, text, or send direct messages on social media to demand money or information.

If they are calling you directly, they will also never require you to provide a one-time passcode (OTP). Your one-time passcode comes with a warning not to share the code with anyone.

Never assume outreach like this is legitimate just because the name or number looks official; scammers can manipulate these. 

If you’re asked to send payments or personal information, it’s best to verify the request directly with the financial institution or company through a confirmed communication channel. Try using the phone number or email address on the back of your credit or debit card, on the financial institution’s official website, or on your account statement.

Fake Order Confirmation Scam

How they work: These schemes entail a fraudster sending you a text or email that appears to be from a major company you’ve likely used or shopped from, like Amazon, PayPal, or Microsoft. 

The note confirms your (fictitious) order and instructs you to contact customer care if you did not place the order. 

Once you do this, you receive a message indicating a fraud agent from your bank will contact you shortly. You then receive a call from this “agent” who tells you someone is trying to make payments from your peer-to-peer payment account.

They tell you the only way to resolve this is to send money back to your account to cancel the pending transaction. Meanwhile, the scammer is the one who will receive the money because they’ve linked their account to your credentials.

What you can do: If you receive an unexpected delivery notice, be suspicious. Don’t click on the link or call back.

Links could install malware to pull personal information from your device or take you to a spoofed website with a fake chat feature run by the scammer. Phone numbers could lead to a fake operator asking for your credit card number or other account details or instructing you to send funds.

Instead, check the website for the number or email address of the delivery service or seller so you can sort this out directly.

Government Imposter Scam

How they work:  A fraudster pretends to be a government agency staff member or law enforcement officer advising you of a past-due balance for a warrant, pending arrest, or other police activity.  By text, email, or phone call, the “officer” instructs you to pay immediately via wire, peer-to-peer payment app, or gift card to resolve the issue.

What to do:  Be wary of any correspondence that doesn’t provide valid contact information or urges you to act immediately. 

Never click on unknown links because they could install malware or lead to a spoofed website with a scammer-run chat feature. 

Also, remember that government entities will never require a specific form of payment.  You can check the validity of the notice by using the phone number or email address listed on the agency’s official website.

If you have fallen victim to any scam or fraud, contact Kirtland Credit Union immediately for assistance at 1.800.880.5328.  We’re here to help.

Don't Be a Victim!

You need to know about credit union impersonation scams so you can avoid becoming a victim of these nefarious tactics.

Online, Mobile, and Telephone Banking will be unavailable on Sunday, December 17 from 12:00-5:00 a.m. MST.