A smartphone scam that has the potential to access your bank accounts and financial information has made its way to Minnesota; authorities warn it's only a matter of time before it makes the rounds in the Northland.

The scam involves the act of "porting"; it works like this:  After obtaining your name and phone number, the scammer contacts your cell phone provider and changes or "ports" your service to another provider.  Then, they use that change to take advantage of "one-time-only" text-code messages that verify a persons identity.  By successfully validating your identity as yours, the scammer is able to access your bank accounts and other financial items.

One potential tip-off to the scam is receiving unsolicited messages from your cellphone service provider or from your financial institution - especially if they suggest that information or details of your accounts have been changed.  If you didn't initiate the change, the potential that you're being scammed is high.

Unfortunately, some elements of this scam are difficult to shield yourself from in advance.  However - as is the case with a lot of scams - diligence is the key.  Never give out unsolicited information and always check your monthly statements.


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