Beware of Fake Credit Card Security Services

Some fraudsters pose as your credit card issuer's security department.

Beware of Fake Credit Card Security Services

Some fraudsters pose as your credit card issuer's security department. This is the latest fashionable scam.

A few days ago, I received an automated call from my Visa credit card security. It was an 800 number. The message went something like this: “Hello, this is Visa Security informing you that two large transactions occurred this morning including a $400 gift card transaction. Our computer systems tell us that you never or rarely make this type of transaction. To allow, press 1. To deny, press 0.”

Several people around me have received this kind of call. This is a phishing scam. Hang up immediately.

This call is very realistic. We really have the impression that it is the Visa or MasterCard anti-fraud center trying to reach us. If you choose one of the two options, an agent will take the call and speak with you in French. And the tone will be very professional. It's quite confusing. Quickly, your interlocutor will ask you for personal information, such as your credit card number or the CVV number on the back. Typical of a scam!

Don't fall for the trap

Normally, if irregular transactions are detected by your credit card security systems, the issuer simply blocks the card without warning you. On the other hand, it is your financial institution that will call you, not Visa or MasterCard.

Even better: hang up and dial the 800 number on the back of your credit card to continue the conversation. Your bank or caisse representative will then send you a text message with a security code to the phone number in your file.

I spoke with the Canadian Anti-Fraud Center about my case. They confirm to me that they receive many reports of the same kind as mine, where the fraudsters, who pose as bank investigators, always mention two suspicious transactions. They add that they need personal information to pinch... the fraudsters.

Fraudsters even take the opportunity to ask you for remote access to your computer, to organize a transfer of money from your bank account or line of credit, always to pinch fraudsters! They even go so far as to simulate an instant refund of this transfer... while they empty your bank account.

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