Urgent warning over dangerous online scammers posing as your bank – how to spot fake text messages

EXPERTS warn that scammers may be posing as your bank to steal your money — here's how to protect your funds.

A new scam is being flagged this week as fraudsters are sending fake text messages to unsuspecting victims pretending to be their bank.

The criminals behind the scam are employing the tried-and-true method of applying pressure to get victims to act quickly and without thinking, but using SMS technology.

One woman named Lynn, who nearly fell victim to the scam, shared her experience with ABC15, saying that she received a text message that claimed to be from the fraud department of her bank Wells Fargo.

The text message stated that a Zelle payment was being taken out of Lynn's account and that she should reply with the word "no" if the payment was not authorized by her.

Lynn said she quickly replied with "no," but that she got "immediately scared because there's $3,500 coming out of my account."

Five minutes later Lynn said she received a phone call from the scammer.

"He kept on saying you got to do this within 10 minutes, 10 minutes, it's going to go out. It's going to go out of your account," Lynn added.

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"I got very caught up in that. And I got hypnotized in a, you know, upset, nervous, I wasn't thinking straight," she added.

Fortunately for Lynn, he husband was quickly able to catch on to the scammer's ruse and stopped her from taking further action that would've undoubtedly lost her money.

How to protect your money

In an official statement, Wells Fargo warned customers that "criminals can spoof a caller ID so it appears as if an unexpected call or text is from your bank. To be safe – don't respond."

Representatives from Zelle added that banks will "never call asking for sensitive information" and will not ask customers to "transfer funds between accounts to prevent fraud."

Wells Fargo advises people to never share temporary access codes or PIN numbers with anyone who calls them unexpectedly.

Furthermore, customers should avoid sending money or giving account information to anyone they don't know, including third-party companies.

If you do find yourself in this situation, Wells Fargo suggests contacting your bank using a legitimate number (i.e. the number found on the back of your debit card), as well as reporting the scam to the FBI.

In other news, personalized smart guns, which can be fired only by verified users, may finally become available to U.S. consumers this year.

Tech giant Microsoft is trying to make the world more woke by rolling out an “inclusiveness” checker in its Word software.

And a federal anti-trust case against Meta, the company formerly-known as Facebook, has been given the go-ahead.

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