Protect Yourself: 4 Red Flags for Identifying Scams

First Republic Bank
July 3, 2019

At First Republic, our first priority is protecting your finances and personal information. Below are a few quick tips on keeping your finances and private information safe.

How to Identify a Fraud Attempt

Fraudsters use urgency and compelling language to trick their targets to reveal personal information. These scams usually come in the form of an alert about a threat to your safety or account security. Whether it is through a phone call, text message or email, look out for the following red flags:

  • Money is involved — They may say that you have won money, that you have been left money, that your money is in danger, etc. — but the common element is money. Fraudsters dangle the carrot of easy money in order to distract you from their target: your personal and financial information. Typically, offers of money or prizes from financial institutions come in the form of a promotion which will be announced with the appropriate regulatory disclosures. Thus, if it sounds too good to be true, it almost certainly is.
  • A false sense of urgency — Fraudsters are notorious for creating a false sense of urgency, attempting to induce panic in order to override our better judgement or common sense. Often the email or phone call will mention that time is a factor and that there will be negative consequences if your decision is not made quickly. Sometimes fraudsters will pose as your boss emailing instructions to urgently send out staff member’s W-2 forms. People often comply with authority and fraudsters rely on that degree of separation to commit fraud.
  • Something is “wrong” — Most scams begin with a hook to get your attention. This usually comes in the form of telling you that there are problems with your credit card or bank account, followed by a request for you to call a number or click a link to resolve the issue.
  • A request for personal information — You should be immediately suspicious of any phone call or email that requests your personal information. Be wary of such requests, especially if the person seems too insistent or rushed.

Fraud Prevention Tips

  1. Uncomfortable with a request received by phone, email or other communication? Do not respond. If the request looks like it’s from someone you know, speak to them in person to confirm their request.
  2. Never click on a link or attachments in an email that you are not expecting or looks suspicious.
  3. Contact First Republic by calling your banker or our Client Care Center at (888) 408-0288.
  4. To help protect others from a potential scam, log a phishing report with the FTC by going to ftccomplaintassistant.gov.

Visit our Security and Fraud Prevention Center for a comprehensive list of best practices to help protect you from fraudulent activity. Be vigilant, stay informed and follow your best judgment.

The strategies mentioned in this article may have tax and legal consequences; therefore, you should consult your own attorneys and/or tax advisors to understand the tax and legal consequences of any strategies mentioned in this document. This information is governed by our Terms and Conditions of Use.