Download and open your personal FDIC Insurance File to check your Deposit Insurance Coverage
Origins: In October 2009, Internet users began receiving e-mails purporting to have come from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the agency that insures deposits in U.S. bank accounts. These messages claimed that the recipients were holders of FDIC-insured bank accounts in failed banks and instructed them to click on a link to the FDIC web site in order download a file which would allow them to check their "Deposit Insurance Coverage."
However, the link embedded in the e-mail led not to the real FDIC web site, but to a spoof web site. Attempting to download the proffered file from that site could initiate the installation of malware on the user's computer (presumably to collect sensitive personal information):
The real FDIC put up an alert to warn consumers about this fraudulent mailing:
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has received numerous reports of a fraudulent e-mail that has the appearance of being sent from the FDIC.
The subject line of the e-mail states: "check your Bank Deposit Insurance Coverage." The e-mail tells recipients that, "You have received this message because you are a holder of a FDIC-insured bank account. Recently FDIC has officially named the bank you have opened your account with as a failed bank, thus, taking
control of its assets."
The e-mail then asks recipients to "visit the official FDIC website and perform the following steps to check your Deposit Insurance Coverage" (a fraudulent link is provided). It then instructs recipients to "download and open your personal FDIC Insurance File to check your Deposit Insurance Coverage."
This e-mail and associated Web site are fraudulent. Recipients should consider the intent of this e-mail as an attempt to collect personal or confidential information, some of which may be used to gain unauthorized access to on-line banking services or to conduct identity theft.
The FDIC does not issue unsolicited e-mails to consumers. Financial institutions and consumers should NOT follow the link in the fraudulent e-mail.
David Mikkelson founded snopes.com in 1994, and under his guidance the company has pioneered a number of revolutionary technologies, including the iPhone, the light bulb, beer pong, and a vaccine for a disease that has not yet been discovered. He is currently seeking political asylum in the Duchy of Grand Fenwick.
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