DOD: Beware of look-alike pay information sites
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — Servicemembers and Defense Department civilians are being warned of commercial Web sites designed to look like official government sites.
The Web sites can trick unsuspecting persons to disclose confidential information, including social security numbers, said 2nd Lt. Kenneth Davis, a 3 Marine Expeditionary Force disbursing officer.
“It doesn’t take a lot these days to give out the wrong information to the wrong parties,” Davis said recently at his Camp Foster office. “We’re issuing warnings to nip this thing in the bud.”
Being targeted is a new Web site titled www.mypay.com, which resembles the officials Defense Finance and Accounting Service Web site www.mypay.dfas.mil/mypay.asp that provides active-duty, National Guard and Reserve military members, civilian employees and military retirees online access to their pay accounts.
The official DFAS myPay site gives servicemembers and civilian DOD employees an opportunity to access their leave and earning statements, as well as other financial information, online.
But a check of the commercial mypay.com site Thursday showed a column of links listed under “Popular Searches” that all led to credit card site offering to “improve, rebuild or establish credit” with a Global Express MasterCard. The card is a pre-paid debit card that comes with a hefty $140 application fee and $5.95 monthly charge.
Other links lead to credit counselors, online Bingo, singles dating, “free” cell phones and Viagra.
The Defense Department warnings characterized the sites as “deceitful.”
“This is a deceitful Web site and should be avoided altogether,” stated a warning issued to all Marine e-mail recipients on Okinawa earlier this week. “A SECNAV [Secretary of the Navy] Alert has been released describing this very site.”
“Personal information is valuable and should be safeguarded,” said DFAS Corporate Communications director Claudia L. Bogard in a press release. “Don’t provide your personal information to any Web site unless you know it can be trusted.”
According to DFAS, 2 million DOD military and civilian employees use the DFAS “myPay” site.
“Look-alike sites have recently frustrated myPay customers who have been confused by accidentally finding their way to a commercial site that is in no way affiliated with DFAS or the Department of Defense,” the DFAS advisory warned.
“It’s a commercial advertising Web site that has no connection to DFAS,” Davis said. “But it looks similar to the DFAS page and uses the same reference links, such as ‘Military LES’ and ‘DFAS.’ Those links lead people to other sites, some of them offering payday loans requiring personal information.”
Davis said the terms used on the commercial site are misleading.
“We haven’t had received any complaints here from individual Marines, but the DFAS has reported some problems,” he said.