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Scammers Beware! Fraud Protection and Prevention Strategies with Judah Montano

There’s nothing better than settling in with a bowl of popcorn and a scandalous tale of deceit. When viewed from a safe distance, it’s difficult to imagine ever falling prey to those outrageous financial scams. But what happens when the drama hits close to home?

Hosts Andrea Klunder and Josh Stringer learn that shame-free discussions coupled with innovative safety measures can prevent real-life swindlers from taking advantage of you and the ones you love––with Judah Montano, Fraud Prevention Manager, Del Norte Credit Union.

Money is an emotional matter, so it makes sense that scammers exploit feelings of loneliness, boredom, inadequacy, or worry to gain financial access. “These people spend a lot of time really building a strong social connection with victims,” says Judah, explaining that the attention is often intoxicating, alarming, or both.

The speed at which scammers convince even the most cautious individual to wire money overseas or turn over sensitive personal details is dizzying. Seniors are particularly susceptible to financial ruin through windfall emails and courtesy call scams. In the former, the “winner” is notified of tax due before they can collect winnings. In the latter, victims are coerced into helping a fraudulent bank representative rectify erroneous activity on their account.

Teens are increasingly at risk via scams conducted over social media. The sugar daddy/sugar mama scheme offers excitement and a lavish lifestyle in return for seemingly innocuous assistance. The FOMO scam also promises a fast track to wealth by tugging at a teen’s fear of missing out on cryptocurrency millions and other get-rich-quick schemes.

Del Norte Credit Union’s brand new online banking system protects members from potentially costly scams and identity theft. Nothing’s failproof, however, so Judah advocates for ongoing financial education and transparent communication. “I’ve always believed that an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure.”

Financial Tea Hot Sip: Think you or someone you know is the victim of fraud or identity theft? Take a deep breath––then contact Del Norte Credit Union, or your trusted local credit union. We can provide you with frontline assistance, intervention, and educational tools. Everything’s going to be okay.


Judah Montano
Fraud Prevention Manager
Del Norte Credit Union


Judah Montano

“It’s important to remember that people do these scams with one intention: stealing money.”

“Fake scams happen a lot, and it’s not these people are so dumb. They’re smart kids; they’re smart, young people; they’re college-educated; they’re, you know, from all walks of life. I really think it’s important to remember that the scammer does this all day, every day. This is his art; this is his craft. He spends time honing his skills.”

“The danger in the scams is actually sending your money to somewhere else. If you are getting involved in one of these scams, the money that you send out is your rent money or your grocery money. So they’re essentially ripping you off.”

“The most important way to protect your children is to actually just have a conversation with them.”

“Remember that two-thirds of our seniors have been the victim of some kind of scam.”

“The more people that we can educate about this, some more people we have talking about this situation, the more open you are to realizing that there’s a problem and understanding that there’s a problem, you know, the more comfortable your child will feel about bringing a situation to you in their time of need.”

“The best part about what I do is I have the ability to help people in a moment of crisis.”

Andrea Klunder

“There can be tension between my friends who are parents and their high schoolers––or even middle schoolers––over privacy, especially when it comes to social media phones, et cetera. They don’t want their parents butting into their business, but the parents want to protect them and keep them safe. It can be really hard to know what’s actually going on in their kids’ online bubbles.”

Financial Tea in the Morning is brought to you by Del Norte Credit Union.
Produced and Edited by Andrea Klunder at The Creative Impostor Studios
Technical Director: Edwin R. Ruiz
Recording Engineer: Kabby at Kabby Sound Studios in Santa Fe
Hosted by Josh Stringer and Andrea Klunder
Production Support from Kirstin Smith and Brian Sanchez

Theme music by Ricardo Lambert

Del Norte Credit Union is Federally insured by NCUA and is an Equal Housing Opportunity Lender, NMLS ID 500583. Content in this episode is for entertainment purposes only and not financial advice.