You can do almost anything on your smartphone these days, including your banking. But be careful; two credit unions have warned member about a potentially dangerous mobile banking application distributed on mobile phone platforms.
Bayport Credit Union, Newport News, Va., and First Technology Credit Union of Portland, Ore., have posted notices on their Websites urging members to avoid a mobile banking application that had appeared on the Android Marketplace, part of the Android mobile phone platform.
Both credit unions noted that Google, which owns Android, has removed the applications, which they described as a means of phishing or fraudulently acquiring members financial information from the platform. Both banks and credit unions appeared to have been targeted in the fraud attempt, according to Credit Union Times, an industry Trade publication.
Same old scam
Scammers never grow tired of a scheme that works, and it appears they've started 2010 by pulling out an oldie - the fake lottery scam. Media reports Tuesday report seniors in Pennsylvania have been getting phone calls informing them they've won a lottery or contest. They are instructed to wire money to cover a "processing fee."
The same scam has been reported this week in North Carolina. Police in Wilmington says the caller will sometimes mention Publishers Clearing House or some other recognizable entity to gain credibility.
Of course, there is no lottery or contest and it should be pointed out that you cannot win a contest that you did not enter.
The U.S. Census bureau will count Americans in 2010 and scammers are already posing as census takers to scam them. The Better Business Bureau says its has received reports of an email circulating on the Internet claiming to be from the BBB and advising recipients to provide sensitive date for the Census. The BBB says those bogus emails should be deleted.
Real Census takers will have an ID badge, a letter from the Director of the Census Bureau and probably a hand-held device that they use to plug in information. They'll be knocking on doors starting in April, but if you mail in your census information, you won't have someone knocking on your door.
Keep up with other scams in ConsumerAffairs.com's Scam Alerts section.