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Take control and prevent fraud

June 7, 2024

A mature woman with short hair is talking via video call on her mobile phone, standing in the study room at her home.

Fraud and scams are a rapidly growing problem in today’s world. Scammers are taking advantage of people by using fake phone calls, text messages, and emails designed to look like they are from trusted businesses—including Redwood Credit Union. We want to assure you that we are committed to helping protect our Members and our community. But we need your help, too. As Benjamin Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” so we want to share a few warning signs and tips to help you take control, stay vigilant, and prevent fraudsters from trying to take your money.

Digital banking can help protect you.

Using digital banking is an easy way to boost your security. You can monitor all your account balances and information anytime. Learn how to freeze your debit and credit cards and set up alerts to let you know about your account activity. Even if you use it regularly, log in today to make sure your contact information is current in case we need to reach you.

Don’t trust every fraud alert.

Our fraud alerts are typically sent via text from a 5-digit number and will never ask you to click a link. If you receive a phone call from us, feel empowered to let that call go to voicemail so you can research and validate the call. You can always contact us to validate an email, text, or call through secure chat in digital banking or through the website message center.

Be aware of vishing and spoofing.

Vishing (voice phishing) relies on scammers’ ability to spoof anyone’s phone number, even people you trust, like RCU. They will attempt to impersonate an RCU team member and claim there has been suspicious activity on your account. They may ask you to provide sensitive information like your account number, password, verification code, or Social Security number. So how can you prevent this?

Just hang up.

We will never call you and ask you for this type of personal information. If you’re ever uncomfortable on a call, we encourage you to hang up and call us back to ensure you are talking to an RCU team member. We also know your time is valuable, so we always try to keep our calls with Members as brief as possible, but fraudsters will try to keep you on the line in hopes of getting more information from you.

Text messages and emails can be fraud, too.

Scammers can use the same spoofing tactics to send you text messages and emails impersonating someone or a business you know. These messages may include urgent requests, such as to verify transactions or confirm account information, and often include unsafe links or attachments. What should you do?

Don’t click that link – just hit delete.

If you receive a suspicious email, don’t click any links or open any attachments. They may contain malware that can damage your computer or phone. You can always contact RCU directly if you’re unsure if a text or email is legitimate.

It may feel uncomfortable, but it’s actually okay to hang up the phone, not respond to that text, and delete that email! If you’re not sure of the source of the call, email, or text, do not respond. Never provide any personally identifiable information unless you’re certain the person you’re speaking to is legitimate.

It’s important to remember: RCU will never contact you and ask you to confirm your digital banking username, password, card number, or six-digit verification code.

We’re here to help you stay vigilant and protect your information and your hard-earned money. If you have questions or think you may have been a victim of fraud, please report it to RCU’s Fraud Department at 1 (800) 479-7928 or contact us online. Consider sharing your story with friends and family to help them protect themselves. We all need to work together to shine a light on fraudulent activity.

Learn more at RCU’s Fraud and Security Center.