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Be Alert to Potential Scams

Investing Financial Planning Insights

Baron Financial Group is committed to keeping your personal information safe and educating you on how to remain vigilant.  With that in mind, we are sharing this bulletin from Schwab regarding potential scams.   

We have not received notification of any fraudulent activity with Baron Client Accounts.  The following is an educational communication from Schwab to make you aware of what scams to look out for.

Be on guard: Scammers are impersonating employees of Schwab and other reputable companies. 

Recently, some clients have received a phishing email or phone call from a fraudster pretending to work for Schwab or another well-known company. We want you to have the information you need to stay informed and able to protect yourselves from falling victim to this scam. 

How the impersonation scams work: 

Through a phone call, email, or other channel, the scammer makes contact and informs the client that there's an urgent matter- a "refund" or "suspicious trades" that require the client to grant remote access to their systems or accounts in order to set up "test transactions" or "catch a criminal". 

Sometimes, the impersonations involve multiple layers of deception-for example, someone who claims to represent "Amazon" says they must connect the client to the "Schwab Fraud Department". 

How clients can protect themselves, and what they should do if contacted: 

  • Do not click on links or attachments included in unknown or suspicious emails and be on heightened alert when receiving any emails with Office, zip, or other common file types as attachments.
  • Look for clues within the text of emails that may indicate they were sent by bad actors. These include errors in grammar, capitalization, or spelling.
  • Hover over links to reveal the website's URL and see where the link really leads. Do not click on the link if the destination is not what you would expect to see. 

  • Listen for any voices in the background who are providing instructions to the person calling you-advice on what to say, or on the details of any proposed transactions. 

  • Clients should avoid providing any personal identifying information in an email or over the phone, even if they say they're calling from Schwab.

  •  Note: Clients can verify that they're speaking with Schwab by hanging up and calling a Schwab phone number that is known to them. 

Please contact Schwab and Baron Financial Group immediately to report all suspicious or fraudulent activity. 

As part of our Responsible Guidance platform, we have created a multi-part video series to educate you on cybersecurity. It is important to stay vigilant to the ever-increasing cyber threats that invade our inbox.  You can view our cybersecurity videos here.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Disclosure: This is a general communication being provided for informational purposes only.  This material is not intended to be relied upon as a forecast, research, tax or investment advice.