Back-to-school themed scams are on the rise

It’s back-to-school for kids across the nation. That special time of year when parents rejoice, teenagers groan and teachers take a deep breath. Unfortunately, any time there is a moment to be taken advantage of, scammers are on the prowl. Here are two back-to-school focused scams that are on the uptick as summer ends.

Big Purchases

One scam that has become quite popular is a text that claims you purchased a big ticket item. The scammer hopes that with back-to-school happening, your guard will be down. This time of year usually brings many purchases, so they’re hoping a text about a fake purchase will slip through the cracks. If you click on the link in the text, you’ll be taken to a separate fake web page that asks you to “verify information,” like your credit card number. And that’s when the scammers have you.

Credit Union and Banks

Another new scam comes in the form of a text from a phony credit union or bank. As USA Today notes, the text will sound alarming — it’s usually something like “Your Mastercard has been temporarily blocked.” Scammers are hoping that you’ll be quick to act as you’re knee-deep in back-to-school shopping. If you click the link, you’ll be taken to a site set up by the scammers (which can look quite real) that asks you to log-in. The thieves then use that info to steal bank info and/or your identity.

If you receive one of these text messages, the best course of action is to simply block the number. Don’t click on any links that seem suspicious. If a text asks about a purchase, open a separate tab and research it yourself. And remember that credit unions and banks will never ask for personal info via text.
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