Costco customers are being warned to be on the lookout for a phone scam targeting shoppers who use credit cards for Costco purchases.

Who Is It Targeting: Costco Customers

What Is It:  The thieves in this scam are looking to cash in on Costco’s decision to discontinue its American Express Card.  Recently all those lines of credit were transferred to a new bank.  Though it’s unclear at this point as to how it happened, apparently scammers were able to gain access to some account information and are trying to take advantage of it.  The scammers call these customers and inform them that they have a pending balance on their American Express Costco Card, then make effort to collect payment.

What Are They After: Pre-paid Debit Cards, iTunes Gift Cards, and Wire Transfers

How Can You Avoid It:  When contacted by anyone trying to collect payment of a bill over the phone, request that they send you a written statement.  If the caller is unwilling to do so, this is almost always an indication of a scam attempt.  Never make payment on a bill you’re unfamiliar with.  If you’re curious about a bill, hang up and find a contact number for American Express on your own to confirm the account.  American Express is requesting to be informed if you receive a collection call like this.  Consumers are told to call (866) 241-8648 and business card holders should call (866) 242-2926.

Anyone can be a victim of identity theft, anyone can use our services and anyone can help us help others. If you think you may be a victim of identity theft, please contact us for free assistance at (888) 400-5530.  If you found this information useful, please consider donating to the Identity Theft Resource Center to help us keep our services free to the public.