Don't get hooked by online scams.

Today's criminals are more likely to use a fake email to steal your credit union account number than they are to pick a lock and take your TV and jewelry. The good news is that there are a lot of effective ways to fight back against scam artists and data phishers.

Phishing comes in many forms.

External Transfers


E-Mail “Phishing”

Phishing is a scam to steal valuable information such as credit card and Social Security numbers, user IDs, and passwords. In phishing, an official-looking e-mail is sent pretending to be from a bank, credit union or retail establishment.


External Transfers


Telephone “Vishing”

Vishing (Voice phishing) is the voice counterpart to phishing. Instead of being directed by e-mail to a website, an e-mail message asks the user to make a telephone call. The call triggers a voice response system which asks for the user’s personal or financial information.


External Transfers


Text Message “Smishing”

Smishing (SMS Phishing) is the mobile phone counterpart to phishing. A text message is sent to the user’s cell phone with some ploy to click on a link and send personal information through text messages.


External Transfers


Mail “Letter Phishing"

This scam is where a letter is sent through the mail to individuals asking them to respond by calling a phone number. The letter advises the individual that they must respond for their own protection.



  • Never provide personal information if you did not initiate the contact.
  • Never click on the link provided in an e-mail you believe may be fraudulent. It may also contain a virus that can contaminate your computer. Go the company’s website directly, instead.
  • Review account statements regularly to ensure all charges and transactions are correct.
  • If you never entered the lottery, you can’t win. You can’t win a prize in a lottery if you didn’t buy a lottery ticket.



  • Look at the sender’s e-mail address. Most scammers use e-mail accounts such as Yahoo, Hotmail, MSN, etc.
  • People fall victim to these scams primarily because they are unaware or the offer seems so real. Only your non-response to this activity will help make it disappear. Spread the word and tell everyone you know about these clever scams and how not to fall victim to them.
  • If you have any questions about phishing, please call University Credit Union at 800.UCU.4510.



  • Never enter personal information, Social Security Numbers, credit card numbers, bank account numbers or PINs in response to an unsolicited e-mail.
  • Do not click on the link. It’s tempting — but don’t! You'll be transferred to the phisher’s website, which might try to infect your computer with a variety of harmful computer viruses. Keep up-to-date virus software, to help guard against any e-mail or Internet intrusions.
  • Report the incident. If you receive an e-mail phishing attempt with University Credit Union’s name, call us at 800.UCU.4510 to report it. Also report it to the Federal Trade Commission.



  • Don’t feel pressure to divulge information: Scare tactics such as threatening to close an account or suspend services are often used to try to get action on a phishing e-mail. If you feel pressure, contact the merchant (using the phone number you look up) to confirm anything before you act.
  • Delete the e-mails from your computer. Immediately erase the phishing e-mails so they can never be accessed by accident.
  • Let everyone know what's happening: If you think you have entered personal information of any kind in response to an e-mail, notify the business that appeared to send the email immediately. The sooner the business is notified, the sooner they can reduce the possibility of a theft


Concerned you're a victim of fraud?

Call us at 800.UCU.4510 to report it immediately! We'll review your account with you and assist with any security questions.

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