CONSUMER ALERT!

Consumer Protection Division
(208) 334-2424 or
Toll-free at (800) 432-3545

Media Contact: Bob Cooper
(208) 334-4112

Date: January 23, 2009

Wasden: “Bank of Cascade” Text Messages are Fraudulent, Do Not Respond

(Boise) – Attorney General Lawrence Wasden warned consumers not to respond to text messages claiming to be from Bank of the Cascades.

Idaho consumers have been contacting Wasden’s Consumer Protection Division to report suspicious text messages, purporting to be from Bank of the Cascades.

Bank of the Cascades is not sending the messages.

“Bank of the Cascades does not contact customers by text messaging,” said Bank of the Cascades President Mike Delvin. “The criminals involved in this activity are sending messages to random cell phone numbers. They do not know who is a customer of the bank and who is not. None of the bank’s security systems have been breached and, as long as the consumer has not responded, there is no danger to their account.”

The text messages ask customers, as part of a “protection program,” to call a telephone number “to verify your account info.” Consumers who call the telephone number reach a recorded message that asks them to enter their credit card number.

“Consumers should absolutely not call the telephone number contained in the text message,” Attorney General Wasden said. “This is nothing more than a phishing scam intended to trick you into giving out your credit card number so the thieves can steal your credit and your identity. You should never give your credit card number to a person who contacts you. It doesn’t matter whether the contact is by phone, e–mail, text message or carrier pigeon, people who contact you and ask for your credit card number should not be trusted.”

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