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FDIC E-mail Alert

Lately I’ve been getting several e-mails from the FDIC with the subject line of “Important.” Are these true e-mails or is it just a scam?

I’m so glad you asked this question. The other day, I received an e-mail from a very helpful newsletter reader telling me about this issue and I was going to share it with you all today anyway, so it’s just perfect that you inquired about it. First of all, just in case some of you aren’t aware, FDIC stands for Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and they are America’s main insuring company working to maintain “a stable and sound banking system” across the U.S.

On August 15, 2006, which was just Tuesday of this week, a consumer alert was issued by the FDIC about a fraud e-mail that has been going around. The e-mail claims to be from the FDIC, but it is all a phishing scam. If you receive this e-mail, the From: line will say “Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation” and the subject line will say something like “IMPORTANT: Notification of Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.” All of this makes it sound reliable and it’s meant to make you think that you need to open it right away. All I can say is don’t open it!

If for some reason you have already opened it, you will see a message saying that the FDIC received an application from your personal bank wanting them to insure your checking or savings account against fraudulent charges, phishing and identity theft. There is then a link for you to click on to enroll in the FDIC’s protection program. The link will take you to a fake FDIC Web site where you will be asked certain information such as your name, phone number, social security number, mother’s maiden name, driver’s license number, birth date, address, e-mail address, a credit card number and expiration date, your personal identification number, your bank routing number and your bank account number.

Just to be clear, this e-mail was not sent by the FDIC and you should not enter any of this information on the Web site. You shouldn’t even click on the link provided in the e-mail and even better yet, don’t open the e-mail at all. Just delete it from your Inbox and your Deleted Items folder as soon as possible. This act is just scammers trying to get your personal information and you shouldn’t make it any easier for them.

The FDIC said they are trying to find the source of the e-mail and the location it’s being sent from so they can stop anything from happening to any consumers. Until they are able to solve anything, you are asked to report any e-mails you get like this to alert@fdic.gov. Keep yourself safe at all times!

~ Erin