HO, HO, NO! Santa and Mrs. Claus Talk Holiday Fraud
On a very special edition of Money, I’m Home, Lynne is joined by Santa and Mrs. Claus to discuss ways they make sure their finances are kept safe from scammers some tips for our members on how they can too!
0:00:04.1 Lynne Jarman-Johnson: Welcome in, I’m Lynne Jarman-Johnson with Consumers Credit Union, from finance to fitness. And unfortunately, sometimes we’ve got to talk about fraud. We have it all and this week, we have the most special guests for you. You guys, get ready. I can hear the jingling now. Santa and Mrs. Claus are here! Welcome in to Money, I’m Home, Santa and Mrs. Claus! Thank you so much. Oh, my goodness, Santa, how are you today?
0:00:39.3 Santa: Ho, ho, ho! Oh, I couldn’t be better, Lynne. I just got the naughty and nice list and you’re not on the naughty list.
0:00:47.7 LJJ: Are you serious, Santa? Hey, you know what, Santa, you bring up a good point. You all of a sudden you mentioned your list, which you’ve been doing for hundreds and hundreds of years. But, you know, there’s new technology out there. How are you building your list these years, Santa?
0:01:03.6 Santa: Oh, well, we always use a Microsoft spreadsheet of some sort or another. And the elves just deliver it to me.
0:01:11.8 Mrs. Claus: Oh, Santa, that’s not true. You know we put some new technology in this year with those clever elves of ours. So, Lynne, don’t let Santa fool you. There is a lot of data and analytics behind how we do our list every year. And I am just so thrilled to tell you that with our clever elves in the North Pole, we have more kids on the nice list this year than ever before. Isn’t that true, Santa?
0:01:40.7 Santa: Ho, ho, ho, absolutely!
0:01:43.4 LJJ: Well, my goodness, Santa. You know something, it is so nice, isn’t it, to have Mrs. Claus who is on top of technology? Which brings me to something. You know something, we have heard and have had some wonderful fraud discussions with Kristy Desimone, who is our fraud specialist here at Consumers Credit Union. I have to ask you, is she on the nice list, Santa?
0:02:04.7 Santa: Ho, ho, ho, absolutely! She just saved me the other day from opening one of those naughty lists from an email that I didn’t really know.
0:02:13.2 LJJ: Santa, you have email? That’s so cool. Hey, Mrs. Claus, you know something, he’s bringing up a point. There all of a sudden seems to be a lot of like texting going on, emails, especially it’s gift-giving time. Hey, you just purchased this, but you really didn’t. What are the things we need to look for, Mrs. Claus? Not that Santa you couldn’t explain it, but it does seem like you’re more really in charge of bringing the gifts. Go ahead, Mrs. Claus.
0:02:41.0 Mrs. Claus: Well, of course, Lynne. There is so much magic taking place behind Santa every year, and so I really work hard to just set him up for success in his sleigh on Christmas Eve. So, some of the stuff that we really need to be careful not to do is just don’t click links if you don’t know where they’re from. Look at the email you receive and make sure who it’s coming from makes sense. Santa gets so many fake emails of kids trying to convince him that they should be moved to the nice list and it’s not even the kid. Also, when you’re tracking your gifts, of course, the gift’s not coming from Santa. If you’re tracking them, make sure you pull them inside as soon as they get to your doorstep.
0:03:22.7 Mrs. Claus: Never, ever give out information to strangers. Make sure you actually know them and you’ve met them in person. Did you know you could turn off your card? Santa and I have cards at Consumers Credit Union and our credit card, I just turn that right off in the app! And you know what? Once in a while I let the elves use my credit card. We made them an authorized user on one of them and I had to turn it off because we had this sneaky little elf.
0:03:47.3 Santa: Don’t forget, Mrs. Claus, on Christmas Eve when I take off, we also call in and let them know I might be using my card to refill the old sleigh.
0:03:54.0 LJJ: Santa, that brings me a question. You’re refilling, what happened to the reindeer? Are you kidding? Gas?
0:04:01.2 Santa: Well, you know, with the holiday spirit, the old Clausimeter has been down the last couple of years. But if people take care of their accounts and don’t have any fraud, I bet you we have a happier ho, ho, ho New Year.
0:04:13.2 LJJ: Well, I’ll tell you what, you know, one of the things that you just mentioned was the gifts that are coming not particularly from you because you do have help in online stores and that sort of thing. Mrs. Claus, tell me something. When you mentioned the online shopping, how do you make sure that it is a real place? Because everything looks so real and then sometimes they might not be fake. Is there something you can look for?
0:04:40.1 Mrs. Claus: One of the things we always recommend is to just research where you want to shop. There’s… What’s it called? That Better Business Bureau, they’re great. Just look the business up on there. And if you’re going to shop local, which is great too, you can look up things, like you can look up the person you’re buying something from on Etsy. Just be careful on social media. It seems like there’s a lot of great things going around that gets everybody in the holiday spirit, but also there’s the not so nice people, which we kind of already talked about hitting Santa’s list this year that are just trying to, you know, maybe not be so nice and get your information. Don’t do that.
0:05:23.4 LJJ: Well, here’s one of the things that we’ve got now, too, that is going to help you as a member. Santa, you were one of our first testers on Voice Check. I mean, your voice is very, very familiar. But hey, it’s your own voice.
0:05:39.7 Santa: Absolutely. I tried to have, you know, that stinker Rudolph trying to call in and mess with my accounts. But no, not with that new AI. Boy, no, only Santa Claus is calling in from now on.
0:05:52.5 LJJ: Hey, Mrs. Claus, what about that voice check technology? It does seem… I mean, we’re laughing about Rudolph calling in because he is, you know, he does like to go out and play, right? We know he likes to play those reindeer games. But this is truly helping our members be able to stay safe very easily and quickly.
0:06:11.7 Mrs. Claus: Yes, it really helps us out. You know, it’s great that we have so many people out in the community helping Santa gather those lists for the kids. But yeah, we definitely don’t want anybody to access our account. And so, it’s been really easy for Santa and I to sign up with Consumers. And now that my voice is with you guys, I can just call right in and you know it’s me. And Santa, I mean, he does have a really recognizable voice, but you never know, somebody else out there could sound just like him. So, we’re really thankful for all this new technology this season.
0:06:46.4 LJJ: Hey, when you take off Santa, you know what, you’ve got a lot going on, you know, when you take off and it’s coming up really quickly. Tell us a little bit about some tools. Do you have new tools on your sleigh? I know you have Rudolph with this bright, shiny nose. But what about GPS?
0:07:04.2 Santa: Ho, ho, ho, well, I don’t need GPS, I’ve got Rudolph’s nose.
0:07:10.5 LJJ: And Mrs. Claus, you know, once your job is done, which I know you start immediately again, but there’s this pause, what do you do with the North Pole once Santa takes off?
0:07:18.9 Mrs. Claus: Oh, when Santa takes off on Christmas Eve, the elves and I, we have this big party because we got all those presents out the door. And then we watch, we have a Santa meter and we watch him go around the world and drop off there all those presents for all those good girls and boys. And it’s just the best night of the year. Now the next day, I put my feet up, take a bath, and then take a long winter nap. And then Santa comes home, and he’s just tired. So, the next couple days after Christmas, it’s pretty quiet around the North Pole until New Year’s Eve, because like everyone else, we love New Year’s Eve.
0:08:00.8 LJJ: Wow, this is fascinating! You know what listeners, we’re finding out things that you never knew about Santa and Mrs. Claus. Santa, one last question. You know, the big day is coming. And we’ve talked a little bit about making sure that we all continue to stay very focused on making sure that people are not trying to trick us in any way, whether that’s with our debit cards or our credit cards or a phone call saying, “Hey, we got this great deal for you.” Santa, has there been anything this year that you have felt that you’re saying, “Boy, am I ever glad that I learned more about keeping my financial well-being protected?” I mean, you Santa have a lot to do. So, it’s really important that you stay really successful.
0:08:48.5 Santa: Ho, ho, ho. Absolutely. I like to stay successful. Boy, I tell you the things that I do, I get my packages off my front door, so if one of Santa’s helpers is delivering stuff to you, drop off those packages and you pick them up quickly. You know, turn off your card online. If you’re not using your card, just do it. Ho, ho, ho. And if you get Santa’s helpers sending you a link on how to buy some Christmas presents more easily, make sure you know who those are. Don’t just be clicking on those links. And make sure, you know, if you get an email with a list on it, you know who that email is from and you’re not just opening random emails. I put those into practice and Mrs. Claus has really helped me keep track of my money so that we can really enjoy that old January 1st. You know what I mean? Ho, ho, ho.
0:09:40.2 LJJ: Well, I wish I was coming to visit you on New Year’s Eve. That sounds very fun, let me tell you. But I appreciate the peek into your world as you are getting ready to head out the door. Santa and Mrs. Claus, I can’t thank you enough. And especially thanks for letting me know I’m on the good list.
0:10:00.8 Santa: Ho, ho, ho. It’s always all you, Ms. Lynne. All you.
0:10:06.1 LJJ: Hey, listen, if you have a wonderful guest, you know what? I bet you know someone like Santa personally. Just let us know. We’d love to interview them on Money, I’m Home. We have had a wonderful year with you. And truly some of our greatest number one listened to podcasts are always about fraud. It’s very important that we laugh and we can have a little bit of fun. But it is a very serious topic. So, head to our website anytime you’d like so you are up to date on podcast articles and some of those nasty trends that are going on. We just don’t want you to have to face those. And if that happens, we don’t want you to face them alone. So, make sure that you tell us, you know, come into our office or give us a call and we’d be glad to help you get out of a sticky situation that might have been accidentally stumbled upon during this very, very busy holiday season. Santa, Mrs. Claus, thank you again.
0:11:00.0 Santa: Ho, ho, ho! My pleasure.
0:11:01.7 LJJ: I hope everybody has a wonderful holiday. And in the new year, again, we are so excited to bring you Money, I’m Home with Consumers Credit Union.