Michigan officials warn of benefit debit card scam

Scammers using cell phone text messages in an attempt to steal unemployment benefits


LANSING, Mich. --

Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency is warning those with state unemployment insurance debit cards that scammers are using cell phone text messages in an attempt to steal their unemployment benefits.

According to a news release, UIA received two calls from individuals receiving unemployment benefits stating they had received text messages telling them to verify their UI debit card personal identification number by contacting the text sender.

Officals at UIA said it’s not their policy to contact anyone by text or by e-mail about their unemployment claim or PIN.

The fake text messages advised individuals they need to reset their UI debit card PIN.

One person was told to send a return text with his PIN included, while the other was instructed to call the phone number listed in the text message.

When a victim calls the telephone number, a recorded voice asks the caller for the UI debit card number and PIN.

With that information, the scammer can access and remove funds from the card account.

JPMorgan Chase administers the MI UI Debit Card program for the state of Michigan.

UIA said similar scam attempts are starting to surface in New York, Rhode Island and Missouri.

If you received a similar message or wishes to verify the status of their Michigan UI Debit Card, call customer service telephone number at 1-866-523-2122.

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