Recently, there has been a rise in phishing emails and scam phone calls from fraudsters pretending to work for Schwab or another well-known company. Below is important information to help protect yourself from these scams.
How the impersonation scams work:
Through a phone call, email, or other channel, the scammer informs you that there's an urgent matter— a "refund" or "suspicious trades" that requires you to grant remote access to your systems or accounts in order to set up "test transactions" or "catch a criminal".
Sometimes, the impersonations involve multiple layers of deception—for example, someone who claims to represent "Amazon" says they must connect you to the "Schwab Fraud Department".
How you can protect yourself, and what you should do if contacted:
Be on heightened alert when receiving any emails with Office, zip, or other common file types as attachments. Do not click on links or attachments included in unknown or suspicious emails.
Look for clues within the text of emails that may indicate they were sent by bad actors. These include errors in grammar, capitalization, or spelling.
Hover over links to reveal the website's URL and see where the link really leads. Do not click on the link if the destination is not what you would expect to see.
Listen for any voices in the background who are providing instructions to the person calling you—advice on what to say, or on the details of any proposed transactions.
Avoid providing any personal information in an email or over the phone, even if they say they're calling from an institution with which you do business. Note: You can verify that you are speaking with your bank or custodian by hanging up and calling them directly.
Please contact Chesley, Taft & Associates or your custodian immediately to report all suspicious or fraudulent activity.