When our members rally around a call to action to help protect one another, I’m especially proud to be a part of this credit union. WSECU recently became the target of what’s called “smishing” attacks. Smishing involves sending text messages that appear to be from a legitimate source (like WSECU), but actually are attempts to get you to reveal confidential account information and then commit fraud.

This was a costly event. Over a couple of spring weekends, these texts led to several hundred fraud claims totaling thousands of dollars. So this was no amateur effort. The texts seemed legitimate to many and it’s understandable that members would fall for them. It was a painful twist reflecting the trusted relationship we have with members.

Once we knew what was happening, we quickly began to act. We worked hard to spread the word to watch out for the fraudulent texts knowing that broad-reaching information about the scam was the best preventative measure. We contacted the media, e-mailed members, reached out to state agency partners and had special messaging on WSECU’s website and social media channels.

But it was really you, the members, that made the difference and helped us drive drown the fraudulent activity. When we asked you to share the information from our Facebook and Twitter accounts with your circle of friends, you did it, allowing the prevention messages to reach farther – and faster – than we otherwise would be able to on our own. You saved a lot of people a lot of hassle and you saved the credit union from incurring additional losses. Regardless of whether your connections received the fraudulent texts this time around or not, this proactive outreach will have a lasting impact on protecting consumers from the risk of fraud.

That’s the power of a cooperative in action. Together, we make life better by banking together. Thank you. And keep vigilant about suspicious messages asking for account info. When in doubt, delete!