RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - There is a warning for members of the military and their families. A new website sounds like the real thing, but investigators say don't trust it.
The U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command released the information below:
QUANTICO, Virginia, February 7, 2014 - The U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command wants to clarify a press release that was issued Thursday, February 6, 2014, to help avoid any possible confusion regarding a false website and the official U.S. Army benefits website for former and current service members.
In yesterday's announcement, CID accurately released that a website claiming to be an official U.S. Army benefits website, using the web address www.usmilitarybenifit.org
The official "MyArmyBenefits" website can be found at <http://myarmybenefits.us.army.mil>. This is the authorized U.S. Army benefits website and serves as the go-to source for all benefits and services available and continues to successfully assist Soldiers and their families. Soldiers and former service members are required to use either their CAC or AKO login information to access the official website. As a reminder, the official site ends with ".mil."
According to CID Special Agents, the primary purpose of the bogus website is to collect as many U.S. Army servicemembers' Army Knowledge Online (AKO) email accounts and passwords. The bogus website also makes the false claim of that "The US military has granted access to unclaimed and accumulated army benefits for the under listed active duty soldiers. Benefits not claimed within the stipulated period will be available for claims after 60 months."
CID strongly recommends that Soldiers, Department of the Army civilians, Army retirees and family members avoid this website and ignore any information or claims posted on the site.
Most online scam attempts are easily recognizable as they are usually unsolicited emails or texts; hoax websites that contain misspelled words, punctuation and grammatical errors, and often ask for private information, such as an individual's email address and password.
Cyber-crime and internet fraud presents unique challenges to U.S. law enforcement agencies as criminals have the ability to mask their true identities, locations and cover their tracks quickly. Websites and accounts can easily be established and deleted in very little time, allowing scam artists to strike, and then disappear before law enforcement can respond.
The ability of law enforcement to identify these perpetrators is very limited, so individuals must stay on the alert and be personally responsible to protect both themselves and their loved ones.
CID strongly recommends that Soldiers, civilians and family members who receive any suspicious and/or unsolicited emails should delete them immediately without response.
However, if you have provided any information to the My Army Benefits website or have received any correspondence from the website, take the following steps:
§ DO NOT LOGIN TO THE WEBSITE
§ DO NOT RESPOND TO ANY EMAILS
§ STOP all contact if you have previously responded to any emails.
§ IMMEDIATELY CONTACT your local Information Assurance (IA) office if you accessed the website from a government computer or system.
Other cyber-crime resources available are:
Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3): http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx
Federal Trade Commission: firstname.lastname@example.org
By reporting this cybercrime one can assist law enforcement agencies in their investigations and help bring those responsible to justice. For more information regarding cyber crime and staying safe online, visit the CID Lookout or the Computer Crimes Investigative Unit (CCIU) webpage page at www.cid.army.mil.
CID Lookout is a U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command (USACIDC) initiative to partner with the Army community by providing a conduit for members of the Army family, to help prevent, reduce and report felony-level crime.
The USACIDC, commonly known as CID, is an independent criminal investigative organization that investigates serious, felony-level crime such as murder, rape, sexual assault, robbery, arson, fraud, and even cyber crime or intrusions into the Army networks (see CID Cyber Lookout).
Solving and preventing these types of crime cannot be achieved solely by CID Special Agents and the Military Police. Together, professional law enforcement officers and the Army community must work hand-in-hand to fight serious crime. As such, CID is On Point for the Army and depends heavily on Soldiers, family members and civilian employees to Be On The Lookout and provide assistance in keeping the Army Strong and safe.
CID Lookout provides the latest information to the Army community aimed at helping Soldiers protect themselves, their families and to reduce their chances of becoming crime victims.
For more information on CID or to report a felony-level crime or provide information concerning a crime, contact your local CID Office or the Military Police, or visit www.cid.army.mil.