Phone Scammers Tarket Local Bank Customers

There is a phone scam being perpetuated in the Washington area in which individuals are being called and told their bank cards have been deactivated.

Scammers are using the bank’s name in a prerecorded message, and are hitting banks nationwide with the same telephone scam.

“Telephone scammers use this method to gather or ‘phish’ for confidential information from our customers,” said Louis B. “Buzz” Eckelkamp, president of the Bank of Washington.

He advised anyone who receives these calls to hang up immediately.

“A few key indicators to listen for are specifics regarding your account. If none of these are mentioned, hang up immediately,” he said. “This is a scam. Look at the telephone area code. If you don’t recognize the number let it go to voicemail as the scammer will likely not leave a message.”

Banks are being overwhelmed with customers calls waning to know if the calls are legitimate.

The FBI has been contacted about the scam.

Eckelkamp said the bank will never initiate contact with its customers in this manner.

Those who feel they may have provided confidential information to the scammer should call their bank immediately.