AAFCU phishermen return to the well

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A couple of weeks ago fraudulent e-mails and text messages were sent out asking for Air Academy Federal Credit Union member’s account information – nothing new, your basic e-mail phishing scam.

But, this week, the scam evolved.

Would be thieves doubled their efforts and sent out a second e-mail, saying there had been fraudulent e-mails sent and that account information – and PIN numbers – were needed to correct any problems.

“We’re aware of this,” said AAFCU Vice President of finance Brad Barnes. “Obviously it’s frustrating and we’ve had an extremely high number of calls from members asking about it.”

Barnes said an outside company started working to shut down the fraudulent Web site after the initial e-mail was sent out, but that the second one must have been sent before the shut down.

Surprisingly, after all the publicity and media warnings about sending bank account information in response to e-mail solicitations, a number of people have fallen for this scam, Barnes said, though he couldn’t say exactly how many.

He did say, however, that it could end up costing the credit union quite a bit of money.

“It costs us $2 to reissue each debit card, and that’s not even counting the staff time that’s needed to address this,” he said. “On top of everything else that’s going on with the economy, we just don’t need this.”

Barnes said the extent of the damage won’t be known until the end of the month when members review their statements.