Staying ahead of crooks is practically a full-time job - and the Better Business Bureau says Michigan residents are falling for this scam because it looks authentic.

What Are the Details of This New Scam?

Scammers are at it again, this time with a legitimate-looking ruse designed to steal money directly from your checking or savings account.

Here's How it Works:

A text from your bank or credit union shows up on your phone, indicating that there's a problem with your account. It probably looks authentic and it contains a link that leads to a site that looks exactly like your financial institution's website.

You know how this works because you've heard about - and been warned about - similar scams before. The site prompts you to enter your username and password - like you'd ordinarily do when you visit your bank's website.

Why Are So Many People Falling For it?

While many of us are 'fraud savvy,' this scam is tricking many people because we've signed up for text message alerts from our banks and credit unions. A text message indicating that there's a problem with our accounts may seem legitimate.

Katie Grevious with the Better Business Bureau spoke with WWMT-TV in West Michigan.

"The scary part of that is banks actually do text you when there are issues if you sign up for those bank text alerts if you sign up for those bank text alerts, you can expect to get them and scammers know this, so they try to emulate what an actual bank would send," Grevious says.

She goes on to say that teens and older adults are especially vulnerable when it comes to this type of scam. Older adults who have been saving for many years can lose large sums of money and teens can be vulnerable because they are generally trusting when it comes to technology.

Here Are Some Red Flags to Look For:

According to the Better Business Bureau, there are certain things you can look for in order to safeguard your money.

  • A sender with a 10-digit number or email address
  • A link included within the text message, usually your bank will only ask for a yes or no reply
  • A bank website URL with additional characters.



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