Phone scams are on the rise and can be a real nuisance. Fraudsters use all sorts of cons over the phone and it’s sometimes difficult to tell the difference between a cold call and a scam. Never give your details to callers, however genuine they seem – and don’t be afraid to hang up and call the company back. Typical scams include:
These callers say there’s a problem with your card or account – for example your card has been cloned. Their aim will be to get information such as your log-in passwords, card numbers or PIN. We’ll never ask you for these. Find out how to check it’s us calling you .
These calls offer you compensation for things like a recent car accident. They may well be genuine callers, but don’t give any information to them. If you want to make a claim, do your own research and contact companies direct.
A caller from a bogus helpdesk will tell you your computer has a virus, but they can fix it with anti-virus software for a fee. Their aim is to either install spyware on your computer and access your personal details, or get your bank card details.
A scammer claiming to be from HRMC will call to say you have an unpaid tax bill or an issue with a refund. Don’t give them any details. Instead, call HMRC direct to find out if there’s a genuine problem.
Advances in technology means fraudsters can show an official phone number on your caller ID display, to trick you into thinking it’s from a genuine company. If you’re suspicious, call the company direct.