First National Bank warns of text message scam

MasterCard customers across the state Tuesday reported receiving text messages in a fraudulent attempt to gain private banking information, according to a press release by First National Bank Alaska.

Valerie Bale, First National’s vice president of electronic banking, said there hasn’t been a breach in customer security yet, but officials want to get the word out to prevent a breach from occurring.

“We do not use text message alerts to notify cardholders of possible fraud,” Bale said.

More than 50 customers from various Alaska regions have reported getting the message, which reads: “This is a message from MasterCard. Your [D]ebit [C]ard is [l]ocked. Contact [u]rgent 844-334-4730.”

Alaskans who believe their information may have been compromised should immediately contact their bank, Bale said. Bank officials have reported the incident to MasterCard headquarters.

Bale said the phone number customers are directed to call is currently sending out a busy tone, but customers are likely being promoted to enter their card number, expiration date or pin code. MasterCard never directly contact cardholders to request personal credit or debit card information, Bale said.

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