Phishing is a scheme where criminals attempt to identify a legitimate email address by sending a familiar looking computer generated email message. Phishing can take place at the work site, home, or anywhere a computer user has access to email. Phishing emails provide the recipient with a website link. If the link is 'clicked', the unaware user is sent to a fraudulent website. At the fraudulent website, the request for personal information such as a social security number, personal account numbers, or passwords may look legitimate. These schemes can also occur via the telephone. The caller may even have some level of information regarding you personally which was obtained through other means, which they will use to entice you into believing the call is legitimate.
The Bay City Department of Public Safety would like to make you aware of preventative measures that will thwart these criminals. Never provide an unsolicited email or phone caller with any personal information especially if the request comes from a bank where you do business, a credit card institution for a credit card you carry, or other financial type site that you may do business with. These institutions will never make this type of request unless you have initiated the call. If you are unsure of the request, initiate contact with your financial institution at a later time.