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The CEO of Southwest National Bank in Wichita said her employees stayed busy Saturday answering customers' questions about a fraudulent text message requesting bank information.
"It's very odd. It's almost like a prank," said Trish Minard.
Late Thursday and Friday, several residents in Wichita received calls from an automatic operator saying their debit card from Southwest National Bank had been locked. The operator asked the person on the other end of the phone to call a number with bank information.
"The phone calls ended Friday and turned into text messages," Minard said. "Fraudulent charges came through from locations in Romania, a non-profit in Maine and a weight loss clinic in California.
"The calls originated from a phone number at a legitimate corporation. The number is still active. We don't know the name of the company."
Minard said there were around 50 bank customers who gave their personal banking information to someone at the number.
"Small amounts of money were taken, some as small as one dollar," she said. "It's like they're testing the accounts to see if they're legitimate.
"No bank will ever call a customer requesting personal banking information. If you're a customer, your bank already has the information."
Southwest National will issue over 100 new debit cards and waive the replacement fees.
"Both customers and non-customers were called," Minard said. "It appears it was a 'purchased' cell phone list."
Other bank names were mentioned, and not just Southwest National. Anyone with further questions about the scam should contact the Better Business Bureau of Kansas at 263-3146.