Home ScamsPhishing Scams Bank of Montreal ‘Customer Satisfaction Survey’ Phishing Scam

Bank of Montreal ‘Customer Satisfaction Survey’ Phishing Scam

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline

Email purporting to be from the Bank of Montreal (BMO) claims that it is conducting a customer survey and will credit $180 to the accounts of those willing to participate.

Brief Analysis

The email is not from the Bank of Montreal. The survey is not legitimate and participants will not receive the promised reward. The message is a phishing scam designed to steal personal and financial information from bank customers. If you receive such a message, do not open any attachments or click any links that it contains.

Example

Subject: Customer Satisfaction Survey

Customer Satisfaction Survey

At Bank of Montreal BMO, we sincerely value your opinions.
As part of our constinuous improvement process, we’re conducting a survey to
benchmark the opinions of our customers. We will use the resulting
information to better serve all of our customers.

We kindly ask you to take part in our quick and easy reward survey.

In return we will credit $180.00 to your account – Just for your time!

Download and complete the survey form attached.

With the information collected we can decide to direct a number of changes
to improve and expand our services.

BMO Bank Of Montreal 2013

 

Detailed Analysis

According to this email, which claims to be from Canada’s Bank of Montreal, bank customers can receive $180 just for participating in a customer satisfaction survey. Supposedly, as part of the bank’s continuing improvement process, it wishes to “benchmark the opinions” of customers.

Recipients are urged to open an attached file containing the survey, fill it in, and submit it to have the $180 reward credited to their accounts.

However, the email is not from BMO and participants will certainly not receive $180 for filling in a survey. The survey is an attempt to trick people into divulging their sensitive personal and financial information to cybercriminals.

Those who fall for the ruse and open the attached file will first be asked to fill in a brief set of questions about the bank’s service. Next, they will be asked to provide their Internet banking login details, credit card data, and contact information, ostensibly to allow their accounts to be credited with the survey reward.

Alas, criminals will harvest all of the information submitted via the fake form. Once they have this information, the scammers can hijack the bank accounts belonging to their victims and conduct fraudulent transactions and money transfers. They can also commit credit card fraud and identity theft.

Companies may sometimes offer rewards or the chance to win a prize for customers willing to participate in a survey. However, they are very unlikely to offer a significant cash reward in exchange for filling in a tiny and generic survey. Nor would any legitimate financial institution expect customers to submit sensitive bank and credit card details via an unsecure form in an email attachment.

This is a very common ruse that has targeted customers of major banks and high profile companies all around the world. Any unsolicited email claiming that you can receive a large cash reward for participating in a survey should be treated as suspect. If you receive such a message, do not click on any links or open any attachments that it contains.

You can report BMO phishing scams such as this via the fraud reporting details on the bank’s website.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer