More Bank of America Victims, Zelle Scams Show Up; here’s how to protect yourself

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CONCORD, Calif .– The impostors struck just as nurse Page Pollack ran to catch a flight. At the airport, she received a text saying, “Bank of America Fraud Alert. Just attempted a $ 3,500 Zelle transaction? Please answer yes or no. “

“So I was like, ‘Oh my God, I didn’t authorize a $ 3,500 transfer through Zelle,'” Pollack recalls. “So I typed ‘no’.”

Then his phone rang. The caller ID indicated Bank of America. She responded and was told the only way to stop the fraud was to do another Zelle transaction. As she boarded the plane, she became more suspicious and opened the B of A app on her phone.

RELATED: School Nurse Scammed Targeting Bank of America and Zelle Customers

“Sure enough, I looked at my account and $ 3,500 was gone, by that time you see that $ 3,500 and your heart is collapsing,” Pollack said.

It is a feeling of sinking that Trista Beauchamp of Concord also felt. She was ripped off in exactly the same way.

“We were pretty convinced that there was no way to get this money back, so we didn’t do anything,” she told 7 On Your Side. “But I started to see your pieces and people describing exactly what we went through, including that it was a particular Zelle transaction, so I reached out to you.”

Beauchamp says it was also taken at a bad time and that the scam is complex.

“It’s very confusing and you kind of say to yourself, ‘That doesn’t sound quite right,’ and at the same time…

ABC7’s 7 On Your Side team has received quite a few complaints – and these scams don’t just happen here in the Bay Area.

Our Chicago ABC station, WLS, also found casualties.

Nausheen Brooks was taken for $ 3,500. “You’re saving your hard-earned money for pulling out. You just don’t know what to do, you feel lost,” Brooks said.

New victim, old scam: SMS, phone calls and fake phone numbers. Linda Sherry of Consumer Action has seen it all.

“It’s a false sense of urgency; it’s always about, you know, act now, act fast, hurry… you know, the sky is falling,” she said. “Just don’t get too excited at the moment… take a step back and think, is that really realistic?” Could this be true? “

After 7 On Your Side spoke, Pollack got a call from Bank of America.

“I said, ‘So that means I get my money back? She said, “Yes”, so I just started to cry! I’m just beyond gratitude, beyond appreciation. And thank you from the bottom of my heart, ”Pollack told 7 On Your Side.

Beauchamp also got his money back.

“My advice is to wait a bit first, because it’s easy to react when someone tells you there’s fraud on your account but just take, you know, take a moment and call back. you know you’ve seen this story, and you know, these things happen, ”she said.

Bank of America posted a disclaimer about it on its website, and for this report it told us in part:

It is important for viewers to understand that the bank and other companies will not require customers to transfer money between accounts in this manner or request sensitive account information.

Zelle’s network operator, Early Warning Services, LLC, agrees and adds:

This is likely an example of a phishing scam where the scammer spoofed the bank’s phone number and attempted to convince the person to provide their personal information, not a bank security breach. or Zelle.

7 The best advice from On Your Side here is to never respond to unsolicited emails, texts or phone calls, and be careful even if the caller ID shows the name of your bank or other institution. financial. Look up the contact details online and contact the bank directly.

Check out more stories and videos from Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

Have a question for Michael and the 7 On Your Side team? Fill out the form HERE!

The 7OYS Consumer Hotline is a free mediation service for consumers in the San Francisco Bay Area. We help individuals with consumer issues; we cannot help with business-to-business matters, or matters involving family law, criminal matters, landlord / tenant disputes, work issues, or medical issues. Please see our FAQ here. As part of our support process, it is necessary that we contact the company / agency you are writing about. If you do not want us to contact them, please let us know immediately, as this will affect our ability to work on your case. Due to the high volume of emails we receive, please allow 3-5 business days for a response.

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