Northwest Federal is committed to providing you with tools you need to help you take control of your personal information and prevent it from being misused. Turn here for reports on the latest scams, merchant security breaches, and online tools, resources and consumer protection tips to keep you informed.

Beware of Tech Support Scams

Northwest has received reports from members who have been victimized by a tech support impersonation scam. Here’s how this type of fraudulent scheme typically occurs:

  • The scam begins with a pop-up message on the victim’s computer, making it appear that their computer has been compromised.
  • The fraudster then contacts the member or the member is asked to contact them.
  • Once contacted, the fraudster claims to be from Northwest’s security/fraud/tech support department and that the member’s account is at risk.
  • The member is then told that they must move money out of their account by wiring funds or withdrawing cash.
  • Often times, the member is instructed not to tell anyone, including Northwest. 

How to avoid a tech support scam

  • Northwest (and other legitimate companies) won’t contact you by phone, email or text message to tell you there’s a problem with your computer. A caller who creates a sense of urgency or uses high-pressure tactics is likely a scam artist. 
  • If you receive a call from someone who claims to be a tech support person, hang up and call the company directly at their valid phone number. 

For more tips on how to avoid and report tech support scams, read this consumer information article by the Federal Trade Commission. 

If you believe you have fallen for a scam, contact us at 703-709-8900 as soon as possible. Our Fraud Mitigation team will assist you in attempting to recover available funds and taking the next step to further protect your accounts.

Watch for Credit & Debit Card Related Scams

 Don’t fall prey to these common fraudulent tactics:

  • Skimming scams happen when fraudsters get your card information by skimming it (through use of a card skimmer) when you conduct transactions at point of sale, ATMs, and the gas pump. Once your card information is captured, it's then used by fraudsters to make fake cards. To avoid such scams, cover the keypad when entering your PIN. Also, when possible, it's safer to use credit cards over debit cards to cut down on your losses. Credit cards with chips, rather than magnetic stripes, use better technology that thwarts criminals' skimming attempts.  
  • Phishing scams have been around for a long time and remain a significant problem. While phishing can take on several different forms, it usually occurs when a fraudster contacts the victim by phone or online via social engineering schemes to get card, account or banking credentials. The original contact may look like an email from a familiar company or a phone call that sounds legitimate. However, the personal information or credit card details obtained by the scammer are then used to commit fraudulent purchases or to gain access to victim's online banking accounts. 

Use these tips to protect yourself from card scams:

  • Sign up for credit-monitoring services to monitor and alert you of any activity on your credit report. Visit to check your credit report from each of the three credit bureaus at no charge - a good way to stop fraud early on.
  • Freeze your credit. When you freeze your credit report with each of the credit bureaus, no one can open new accounts in your name - not even yourself. You can unfreeze your credit when needed. 
  • Set up alerts on your credit card accounts so you'll be notified when a purchase is made. If you didn't make the purchase, you can take steps to cancel it and secure your account quickly. 

If you believe you have fallen for a scam, contact us at 703-709-8900 as soon as possible. Our Fraud Mitigation team will assist you in attempting to recover available funds and taking the next step to further protect your accounts.

Report Fraud
  • Members are reporting phone conversations where they are sent a verification code and are asked to provide the code to the other party. The code message includes the following statement: “NEVER SHARE your online banking verification code. NWFCU personnel will never request this information”. If you are asked to provide that code, please do not. Discontinue the conversation and report it to Northwest Federal.

  • There is a suspicious postcard being mailed via the United States Postal Service noting “you have recently closed on a mortgage with Northwest FCU.” The recipient of this postcard is provided a phone number to call in and enter a mortgage identification number.  Northwest Federal does not send correspondence related to account verification via postcards. If you receive this suspicious postcard, do not respond by calling the phone number provided. Instead, shred it or report it. If you have any questions, please contact our Member Service Center for further assistance. 

Call Northwest Federal immediately at 844-709-8900 if you are experiencing any of the below issues:

  • Your card is lost or stolen

  • You’re a victim of fraud

  • You suspect Identity Theft, Elder Financial Exploitation, or any other type of fraud

Use these forms to report card fraud or card disputes:

Fill out this Cardholder Affidavit of Fraud for fraudulent use. Return this form to any NWFCU branch or send to us via secure email

If you knowingly gave your account information to a merchant and didn't receive the product or service as expected, complete this Cardholder Dispute Form.

Affidavit of Check Fraud

Affidavit of ID Theft

Affidavit of Account Fraud

Report fraud to these authorities:

For ID Theft, contact the Federal Trade Comission

For Elder Financial Exploitation, contact the local police department and/or Social Services for your area.

File a complaint with if you suspect or know you are a victim of an internet crime.

Red Flags that Signal a Scam

Scammers use these similar tactics to lure their victims:

  • Pressure to cooperate - including threats of missing deadlines, taking legal action, and involving law enforcement
  • Immediate need to send funds - requesting you to wire money or purchase gift cards
  • Urgent request for online banking user credentials – provoking you to provide user name and password in order to gain access to your online banking account or your computer.

To protect yourself from being scammed, remember:

  • Slow down. Take time to check out the information, search our Fraud Prevention & Safety tabs below, consult an expert or tell a friend.
  • Don’t send money or give out personal information. Beware of unexpected requests that you receive as a text, phone call, online, or via email.
  • If you don’t recognize the caller, don’t answer.  If it’s important, the caller will leave a message.