It was only a moment before Alyssa Beckwith fell for the fraud.

The text messages she received looked legitimate – even expected. After some of her personal information was stolen a few years ago, she signed up with her bank, Wells Fargo, for SMS notifications to confirm every time she made a new purchase. And this step of ironically protecting herself made her such an easy target.

When a scammer texted Beckwith in April telling her that a withdrawal of $ 240 had been charged to her Wells Fargo card and “Contact us if you’re suspicious,” she didn’t hesitate and called . A robot voice greeted them in Wells Fargo and asked them to verify themselves. She entered her credit card number, social security number, and her birthday.

Smishing attempt sent to Alyssa Beckwith.Courtesy Alyssa Beckwith

“This information is valid. Thank you,” said the voice and hung up. Only then did she realize her mistake.

“I thought wait a minute,” Beckwith said on a phone …



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