Scam Awareness: Spoofing
In today’s digital age, it can be easy for scammers to steal money in a short period of time without extensive personal information. Today, many of them resort to phone calls that can instill fear and drive quicker action as opposed to other methods such as email. Spoofing occurs when a spam caller disguises their identity and pretends to be someone they’re not. In some cases, the caller ID from a scammer can appear to be a legitimate institution – such as a financial services company.
These individuals can find your phone number via a public information repository, and when you’re called, they may offer additional information they know about you, making the interaction seem legitimate. This far into the process, all it may take is a revealed password or verification code for them to steal money. Other common requests include asking for debit card information or directing you to send money by wire transfer, Zelle®, or other payment services. Scammers typically make this sound urgent and could threaten to disable services.
Helpful information and tips to avoid being scammed:
- Westfield Bank will never call to ask for personal information, such as your online banking credentials. If you ever question the legitimacy of a call appearing to come from Westfield Bank, hang up and call our call center at 413-568-1911. Do NOT call the questionable number back.
- Don’t trust caller ID alone, as it may be modified to show a financial institution’s name.
- Don’t give information over the phone if you receive a call stating that a transaction is canceled, even if the caller claims to be from Westfield Bank. Once again, contact our call center to inquire about the transaction.
- Don’t click on links in unsolicited emails or texts.
- Don’t give an unsolicited caller remote access to your computer.
- It should be common practice to never reveal personal information on a phone call with a stranger. If you believe a scammer may have contacted you and/or stolen information, immediately change the passwords on your account(s) and reach out to Westfield Bank for further assistance.
- Spoofing doesn’t just happen in the banking industry. Scammers may appear to be calling from reputable organizations such as charities and emergency services to ask for money.
- For more helpful information and tips on avoiding scams, visit our Security Center.
Zelle and the Zelle related marks are wholly owned by Early Warning Services, LLC and are used herein under license.