TAUNTON – Four local banks are collaborating to warn customers about a widespread telephone scam in order to protect them against identity theft, the banks announced Jan. 6.
Bridgewater Savings Bank, Bristol County Savings Bank, Mechanics Cooperative Bank and Taunton Federal Credit Union said the scam comes via an automated telephone message that claims to be a person from a financial institution.
The scam, known as “phishing” uses recorded messages, often with names of local banks, to obtain personal and account information. The person who answers the phone is asked to press “one” to continue.
If the recipient of the call continues responding to the telephone menu, a request is made to enter debit or credit card information, including card number, Personal Identification Number or PIN and the expiration date of the card.
The banks are warning consumers not to respond to the calls and to immediately call their financial institution if they have received or responded to one of the calls and provided information. Consumers should report their card as lost or stolen and go to the local branch if necessary. A fraud alert can be placed with the three major credit bureaus.