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Jefferson County (Alabama) officials warn of cell phone scam

In the scam, someone sends a text message to a cell phone informing the owner that his or her debit card has been compromised and blocked. It provides a number to call where a recorded message then asks the customer to reactivate their card by requesting the debit card number, PIN, expiration date and three-digit security code number.

A similar scam provides customers with a phone number to reactive their card, said Chief Deputy Randy Christian.

"Unfortunately, credit unions and banks across the country are being hit with similar phone scams," Christian said. "Apparently this scam is pretty widespread."

Authorities said anyone who has questions about whether they have been a target of the scam should contact their financial institution directly.

By Carol Robinson -- The Birmingham News, January 21, 2010, 12:02PM