Recognize, Avoid and Report Common Fraud Attempts by Phone, Email and Text (vishing/phishing/smishing)

As our lives become more digitally driven, we are seeing increased attempts to defraud bank clients through phone calls, email and text messages. Criminals are finding new ways of committing fraud through scam attempts that play on your emotions and seek to gain your trust. Fortunately, with the right information, you can more reliably determine if you’re being targeted and successfully report fraud.

Today’s scams are made to look legitimate, and the scammers will often have information that make them seem real. They often know certain details about you and your accounts and sound like actual bank employees, so they can be hard to detect as criminals.

To be prepared and help avoid becoming a victim of these common scams, use this important information and report any fraud attempts you may encounter:

  • KeyBank will NEVER contact you and ask for personal information by text, email, or an unsolicited phone call. This includes unsolicited calls that ask you for your username, password, a one-time passcode, social security number, account numbers, or answers to security questions.
  • Suspicious Emails. Beware of suspicious-looking email addresses, even if the sender seems familiar. Never open links or attachments in emails you don’t fully trust or that you were not expecting (for example scanned documents or faxes). Use the information below to report email scams that pretend to be KeyBank asking for your personal or account information.
  • Suspicious Text Messages. Beware of texts from outside your saved contacts. Fraudulent texts may appear to come from a bank and ask you to log in or verify transactions or to provide your login details. Don’t provide personal or account information. Call KeyBank directly at the number below if you have questions or concerns about fraud.
  • Using Mobile Apps and Social Media. Watch for requests for money you receive in apps or on social media. What feels like a real chat could be a scam.
  • Suspicious Phone Calls. If you don’t recognize the number, think twice about picking up. Scammers can mimic local area codes to get you to answer. It is important to remember that cybercriminals have several ways to access cell phone numbers, so you should never assume that you’ve given your number to someone contacting you on your cell phone.

Identifying Fraudulent Texts

  • Text messages are one of several legitimate ways KeyBank may contact clients. One example of a legitimate text you might receive from KeyBank would be to provide a KeyBank Fraud Alert of a potentially suspicious card-related transaction. In that case, the text message will include specific information about the transaction in question with response options you can make by text or phone to confirm or deny the transaction. We will not text you a link to verify your transaction. Another example of a legitimate text you might receive from KeyBank is a reminder to make the initial opening deposit into your new account with a variety of funding options available.
  • Typically, suspicious and fraudulent text messages are unsolicited but appear to come from a legitimate source that wants you to provide important security or account access information. Fraudulent text messages often include a request to take action by following a link or by calling a telephone number. You may also receive a call from the fraudster requesting additional information.

What to Do and How to Report Fraud Attempts

If you receive a suspicious message or call that appears to come from KeyBank with an urgent tone about an account and a request to provide important security or account access information by clicking a link or calling a phone number, do not take the requested action. Here’s what to do:

  • For phone calls: Be wary of answering unfamiliar numbers. If you answer and something does not feel right or you are being asked to provide personal information, hang up and call KeyBank’s Customer Service at 800-KEY2YOU® (539-2968). For clients using a TDD/TTY device, please call 1-800-539-8336.
  • For text messages or emails: Take a screen shot of the message, attach it in an email and send it to, then delete the message from your device. If you cannot take a screen shot, document the message content, including the link name or phone number you're being asked to call, into an email and send it to
  • If you are unsure whether a message that appears to be from KeyBank is legitimate, you can always contact KeyBank Customer Service at 800-KEY2YOU® (539-2968). For clients using a TDD/TTY device, please call 1-800-539-8336.
  • If you’re a client or business that has followed a link or called a phone number in a suspicious text message and provided any personal information or KeyBank account information, immediately contact Key’s Fraud & Disputes Hotline at 800-433-0124.

This material is presented for informational purposes only and should not be construed as individual advice.

KeyBank does not provide legal advice.