Phishing and Phone Fraud

The most common source of stolen personal information are the victims themselves, who unwittingly reveal sensitive information to people they believe they can trust.

Phishing - using email or a website to obtain personal information - and phone fraud - sometimes called Vishing - are two increasingly common ways that fraudsters trick people into revealing personal information.


Phishing occurs when an email or text message is sent to an internet user to try to trick them into revealing their account numbers or access codes. This personal information is then used by the sender of the email for fraud or identity theft.

  • Very often the phishing email or text message contains official sounding language - often a warning that your account needs to be activated or that your personal information needs to be confirmed.
  • The email or text message will often request a response to include personal information or it will include a link to a fake website which looks very similar to a legitimate website.
  • The fake website may even have a similar address to the real website (like instead of
  • Email or text message recipients who click on the link think that they're being redirected to the legitimate website and will often enter their account number or access code. This personal information is then collected by the creators of the fake site and used for fraud or identity theft.

Westminster Savings Credit Union will never solicit personal information by email or text message, and we use anti-phishing features in Online Banking to confirm that you are on the correct site. To protect yourself:

  • Never reveal sensitive personal information by email or text message
  • Look carefully at the email: if the request is odd or unexpected, or if it requests information about you that Westminster Savings should already have, delete it and contact Westminster Savings at 604-517-0100 immediately.
  • Don't be fooled: phishing emails and text messages can even include Westminster Savings logos or appear to come from a WSCU ( email address. If you weren't expecting an email or text message from Westminster Savings, ignore and delete the message.

Phone Fraud, or Vishing

Phone fraud - sometimes called "vishing" - is the attempt to fraudulently obtain personal information over the phone.

Sometimes this may begin with a recorded message that requests that you return the call and leave personal information on an answering machine. Other attempts may be through direct contact by an individual pretending to work for a financial institution or credit card company. Often phone fraud sounds like an "official" request for personal or financial information.

Westminster Savings will never call you to request personal information on the phone. Never reveal sensitive information - including access codes, credit card information, ATM card codes or personal information - over the phone unless you have initiated the call and are confident that you are speaking to an authorized individual.