Get All Access for $5/mo

Andy Cohen Lost 'A Lot of Money' to a Highly Sophisticated Scam — Here's How to Avoid Becoming a Victim Yourself Consumers reported losing $8.8 billion to fraud in 2022.

By Amanda Breen

Key Takeaways

  • Andy Cohen was targeted by scammers posing as his bank's fraud alert system, a situation that escalated due to a recently misplaced debit card.
  • The host engaged with the fraudsters for over an hour, which resulted in setting up call and message forwarding that redirected all his bank communications to the scammers.
  • Cohen advises consumers to visit their bank in person to deal with potential fraud and to scrutinize email addresses to avoid a similar fate.

These days, scams are more sophisticated than ever — and Andy Cohen just experienced it firsthand.

On a recent episode of his Daddy Diaries podcast, the 55-year-old Radio Andy host opened up about recently being the victim of a scam, which began with an email from what appeared to be his bank's fraud alert system.

Related: Rising AI Threat Sounds Like Your Loved One on the Phone — But It's Not Really Them

It wasn't completely unexpected, as Cohen had recently misplaced a debit card.

"I did lose a card, and I put in for it, and I got an email saying, 'There might be fraud on your account,'" Cohen said on the podcast. "And I was like, 'Oh, this is attached to the card I lost.'"

Cohen logged into his bank account, but his alarm bells went off when he was prompted to enter his Apple ID and password. The host "bailed," but it was too late — he believes that logging into his bank account on the site gave the scammers full access.

@breakingtherules_pod Andy gets took for thousands on a bank wire fraud scam! #fyp #foryou #breakingtherulespodcast #bravo #andycphen #daddydiaries #wwhl #scam #bankfraud ♬ original sound - Breaking the Rules Pod

"I leave the dentist, I get a call, and it shows up as the bank's name, and they're like 'it's fraud alert,'" Cohen says. "They were naming credits and charges I had made because they clearly had access to my account."

The scammers' number appeared legitimate thanks to caller ID hacking. Still, Cohen admits he should have asked to call them back or pay an in-person visit to the bank to sort things out. But he stayed on the line with the fraudster for over an hour, even entering numbers into his phone that set up call and message forwarding.

As a result, when Cohen got off the line and dialed his actual fraud alert, "all of [his]calls were being forwarded to the scammer" — and so were all of the bank's. "I go to the bank the next day, and these people wired out of two accounts a lot of money," Cohen says.

Related: A Scammer Tried to Come For My Small Business — and Yours Could Be Next. Here's How to Protect Yourself

Now, Cohen suggests anyone in a similar situation head directly to their bank branch to avoid the potential fraud — and take an extra close look at email addresses to make sure they're genuine.

Consumers reported losing $8.8 billion to fraud in 2022, an increase of more than 30% year over year — and imposter scams were the most common, according to the Federal Trade Commission.

Amanda Breen

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior Features Writer

Amanda Breen is a senior features writer at Entrepreneur.com. She is a graduate of Barnard College and received an MFA in writing at Columbia University, where she was a news fellow for the School of the Arts.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Business Solutions

Increase Productivity with This Microsoft 365 Subscription, Now $25 Off

It can make the entrepreneur life a lot easier.

Business News

Apple Pay Later Is Ending. Here's What's Taking Its Place.

The program was available for less than a year.

Leadership

This Artist Answered a Businessman's 'Powerful' Question — Then His Work Became 'the Poster Child for Juneteenth': 'Your Network Really Becomes Your Net Worth'

Reginald Adams was the executive director of a Houston-based art museum for more than a decade before he decided to launch his own public art and design firm.

Leadership

Harvard Business School Professor Says 65% of Startups Fail for One Reason. Here's How to Avoid It.

Team alignment isn't nice to have -- it's critical for running a successful business.

Business News

Here's What Companies Are Open and Closed on Juneteenth 2024

Since it became a holiday in 2021, Juneteenth has been recognized by some major corporations as a paid day off.

Growing a Business

I Hit $100 Million in Annual Revenue by Being More Transparent — Here Are the 3 Strategies That Helped Me Succeed

Three road-tested ways to be more transparent and build relationships that can transform your business — without leaving you feeling nightmarishly over-exposed.