Better Business Bureau serving Northern Indiana has issued a warning after several Northern Indiana consumers report receiving letters from Vanguard though they’ve never opened an account with the investment company.
One Fort Wayne resident claimed to have received a letter stating they had an open brokerage account, but the consumer has never done business with the company. Other consumers have reported incorrect personal information on letters they have received. Some consumers have received up to five letters with incorrect information.
BBB reached out to Vanguard about the letters and the investment firm advises consumers to email firstname.lastname@example.org to report any correspondence that looks suspicious.
Use BBB’s tips to avoid fraud:
Never share personally identifiable information. Especially with someone who has contacted you unsolicited, whether it’s over the phone, by email, on social media, even at your front door. This includes banking and credit card information, your birthdate, and Social Security/Social Insurance numbers.
If something sounds suspicious, call the company directly. You can call the company or check the company website directly. Don’t click on links in an unexpected email – type the URL for the company into the browser or do a web search to find the right website.
Don’t click, download, or open anything that comes from an anonymous sender. This is likely an attempt to gain access to your personal information or install malware on your computer.
Question generic emails. Scammers cast a wide net by including little or no specific information in their fake emails. Always be wary of unsolicited messages that don’t contain your name, last digits of your account number or other personalizing information.
If you spot a scam, whether you’ve lost money or not, report it to BBB’s Scam Tracker at BBB.org/ScamTracker and the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. Your story can help other consumers avoid similar scams.