EPPI Card — Scam
In a first for phishing scams, a new scam targeting hundreds-and-thousands of Americans availing of child support and employment benefits was uncovered across the country last week.
The scam takes advantage of the fact that such benefits are beings disbursed through convenient services like the EPPICard and the EBT Card which require use of magnetic cards. It immediately puts at risk, residents of 15 states where such services are gratefully used. Overseas criminals, possibly Romanians, are thought to be behind the scam.
In Mississippi and Pennsylvania, it is holders of EPPICard who are being targeted (see Press Release, Attorney General’s Office and Pittsburgh Tribune-Review News Report). In Portage County and the rest of Ohio, it is the holders of Electronic Bank Transfer Cards who are under threat (see Record-Courier News Report).
Fraudsters are flooding the country with emails informing recipients their EPPI Card has been imposed with some restrictions. Here’s one version (together with all of its silly mistakes):
Dear EPPICard holder account,
As part of our security measures, we regularly screen activity on the EPPICARD network. WE recently noticed the following issue on your account: A recent review of your account determined that we require some additional information from you in order to provide you with secure service. Case ID Number: PP-[protected] For your protection, we have limited access to your account until additional security measures can be completed. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Please update you EPPICard account to restore your access as soon as possible. You must click the link below and fill in the form on the following page to complete the verification process
Click here to update your account
In accordance with EPPICard User Agreement, your account access will remain limited until the issue has been resovled. Unfortunately, if access to your account remains limited for an extended period of time, i it may result in further limitations and eventual account closure. WE encourage your to log in to your EPPICard account as soon as possible to help avoid this. We thank you fro your prompt attention to this matter. Please understand that this is a security measure intended to help protect you and your account.
The link in the email directs you to a site that looks identical to the official EPPICard website. It asks users to sink in their card number, security PIN number, and their Social Security Number.
The official site now carries a warning: it is reminding everyone that it never asks for such personal information from its members whether through SMS, email or through phone calls.