Recently many residents of Hawaii have been receiving a text message that appears to come from the Bank of Hawaii informing them that their accounts have been blocked or suspended or their lines of credit have been reduced. They are also told in the text message to call 857-453-3714 and enter their account number and PIN in order to rectify the situation. This is a phishing scam and anyone providing that information to the scammer would end up becoming a victim of identity theft and having their accounts emptied.
Regardless of how official such a text message may appear, you should never provide personal information to anyone in response to a telephone call, email or text message because in none of those situations can you be sure that the person contacting you is legitimate. If you do receive a communication from a bank, government agency or any other person or entity that you think might have a legitimate need for personal information from you, you should call the real entity at a telephone number that you know is legitimate in order to ascertain the truth. Banks do not call, text or email their customers asking for personal information. You should always be skeptical of anyone asking for such information. As I always say, “trust me, you can’t trust anyone.” This particular scam involved the Bank of Hawaii, but this scam is constantly being done around the country using the names of other banks. As for those of you in Hawaii who may have fallen for this scam. You should contact the real Bank of Hawaii at 888-643-3888 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for help.