Cyber fraud

This isn't relevant to AF but I know that there may be vulnerable people out there without my experience ( was a fraud officer with a major UK bank for some years) who would benefit from a heads up.

I recently received an e mail from a supposed debt recovery firm demanding payment of an  amount I supposedly owed to a company in Waltham Cross EN8 7LR.  My first reaction was alarm even with my knowledge but I calmed down long enough to do a websearch on the company who's website claims that they were established in 1908 yet the web page is copyright 2016. I then noticed that the link I was supposed to follow was to a site in Rouen France at which point I  went to ACTIONFRAUD.Police website and reported the whole thing.

It is very distressing  to be targeted in this way but forewarned is forearmed. If you receive anything remotely similar please report it at once. It is a bit different to the usual NIgerian frauds and "I'm stuck in XXXXX and need some money" scams

Bob

28 Replies

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  • Thanks, I didn't know about the police website. I shall now report the messages we keep getting from the 'Inland Revenue' telling us we are owed a plausible rebate which will be paid on receipt of a load of security information.......

  • yes that is another one!

  • We had one of these yesterday,  the company sells transformers but the clue was to pay the bill. the hyperlink was the same as your Rouen France.  I rang this  company  to be told that they have had over 100 phone calls from people who have had the same email.  The worst bit is these scammers put our physical address on the so called account.  The other bit was the email address  lewis wade@ write4you.co.uk.  No such web address.   We have also reported to ACTIONFRAUD.

    We have also

  • Just another thought, were you once with Virgin e mail or now with Talk talk? The reason I ask is that the scam came across my old non active virgin.net account. Last year I switched to  gmail as virgin sold all their non cable customers to talk talk who then had a much publicised  hacking of their customer data base. Since virgin do not have cable south of Bristol and  I don't like being "sold"  I moved to another cable supplier. This could account for the address being listed?

  • I have a virgin email but I don't actually use it.  I suspect that they only sold off those who had virgin emails but did not have a virgin account for TV etc.  However I had a Tiscali email account and that was sold to Talk Talk.

    Lists are scammed from thousands of places.  Just put your name in a search engine - you will be surprised what comes up.

  • Claude Lyons Ltd I expect. Different e mail as mine was Philip Reid. Never trust anything that comes off the WWW.

  • I get e mails every day saying I have either got an invoice to pay, or that I have a payment pending to me, both inviting me to open an attachment.

    As I am not involved in commerce in any way I just delete them.

    I can see how many would be intrigued or concerned enough to open an attachment and probably let in a virus.

  • My wife gets a few a week to an o2 E-Mail address that she still has. I still have an old o2 address but never get any spam on it.

    o2 had informed us early this year that they were killing off addresses for ex broadband clients at the end of June but it did not happen.

  • Yes but that source is likely to be quite separate.

  • No, we have never had an account with Virgin or Talk Talk.  I am wondering if the list was scammed from somewhere else, the only place with the details, would have been from an organisation my husband subscrubes to, this is organisation holds Trade Fairs, the tickets to these fairs are snet out regularly.  My husband works in trade that uses transformers and other electrical equipment.  When i rang the transformer company, the particular staff member had also received the spam email purporting she owed money to the company,  the email is worded that the senders are a debt collection agency.   This is the only link I can think of,  it has to be via the trade fair circuit and this list has been hacked.

  • Lists are scammed from thousands of places. Just put your name in a search engine - you will be surprised what comes up.

  • UPdate, just had another email, with a job offer, attachment of course.  Husband's CV is out there in there cyberspace, with two Internet  Agencies.  I have just stood over him and got him to delete the CV with both Agencies .  have sent notification to both Agencies letting them know that spamming or fishing is going on.  The latest email mentions Total Jobs..this was another clue for us.  Checked the company with the supposed job offer.  Doesn't exist here in England and we are not interested in Spain.  As if we don't have enough to contend with...

  • Funny you should say that Peter,  I put my name in and only three places came up, but no details, just quotes.  I am one of those people who have things tied down.  B put my name into a certain site, but because of the job I did there is an embargo by the Government I worked for, that my records are sealed until after my death.  They will know I am dead because I am paid a superannuation by this Government.

  • Bob - great idea to post this as many wouldn't be aware.  If I get less than 20 spam emails or less than 5 calls per week I think I am lucky!!!  However one incident recently very plausible but FALSE so I will give details.

    TELEPHONE PREFERENCE SERVICE (TPS) - BOGUS EMAILS and PHONE CALL.

    They knew that I had registered with the TPS.

    I had received 2 or 3 emails from the above - except they weren't and I just deleted them.  Then received a phone call (on home call) saying from TSP and for security reasons needed to confirm details.  Then went through the usual of name, address, etc.  Then asked date of birth and immediately alarm bells were ringing in my head (in addition to the tinnitus!!!).  Gave a false on.  Then they asked were the last 4 digits of my debit card nnnn - they were.  Then asked to confirm expiry date of 03/17  - I said yes (knowing it wasn't and the man said please look up on the actual the card because there is an error.  I said that I didn't have card (false) because my wallet was in the car and my wife was at work (true).  He then said could we arrange a time for him to call back when I had the card.  Stupidly I said I wasn't interested and not to bother.  I realised afterwards that I should have agreed a time and them phoned the police to see if they could trace when the man called back.

    After the initial questions and whilst I was on the phone to the man I actually dialled the phone number on the landline caller display and, as I expected, it was false.

  • Thanks Bob!

  • Hi there everybody, I have at least two e. Mails saying that I am due for a refund of £312 68 from HM Inland Reveue, was asked for all the usual things like my card account no, date of birth etc etc. si I phone I phoned HM in land revenu and asked them about it, was told tha HM would never send messages via e. Mail, and that it was all a scam, so glade I didn't fill the details in.  Also if rom I Tunes about some games I have supposed to have ordered £128 in total, all wanting details of bank details. I think this is becoming more frequent nos .Sann

  • Best to ignore anything you get by email.  My best bit of fun was when I had email from Nat West Bank asking for confirmation of details. Since I have never had an account with Nat West I sent them some complete garbage so that they wasted a few minutes trying to steal from an account which did not exist.

  • Hey I like that Bob, good thing to remember thanks,  Sa. 

  • I had a strange one the other week. I had a problem with a Seagate H.D. and E-Mailed a question to them. Their form asked for my name, address and phone number. They replied by E-Mail to my question in a round about way in poor English.

    Two days later I had a phone call from "Mark at Microsoft" who had a very Indian accent offering to help with computer problem. He got very short shrift and it seemed a rather strong coincidence to get such a call after contacting Seagate.

    Last week I had another call from 'Microsoft' I later had an E-Mail from Seagate with a questionnaire on the service I had received from them. I put in a note about the 'coincidence' of getting calls from Microsoft right after contacting them.

  • About every month I get one of those Microsoft calls. Sometimes the English is quite good. It may be a coincidence but if you have never had that type of call it would suggest that possibly there is leaking of information from seagate's outsourcer. Definitely worth pursuing if only to prevent others.

  • I wanted to pursue it but Seagate have no contact phone number now on their web site. It used to be a number in Ireland. By E-Mail there is no way to contact a security department.

  • Report to the national police cyber team. Your local force may have one but I think national one or run by metropolitan police.

  • ACTIONFRAUD

  • They would not bother. Once when my credit card was cloned (long story) the person used it to buy software to download and to set up a web site and buy a domain name.

    From E-Mails I wrote to a friend at the time:

    Yesterday I received a letter addressed to an unknown Abdullah Mohammed at my address. It is from the Domain Registry of America who a Google search shows to be a scamming organisation who try to trick people into renewing their domain names early with the wrong company. As I am not Abdullah nor do I have a domain name of bassjunkiez.com what is the point of the letter? A doubt in my mind concerns the fact that my Credit Card was cloned earlier this year and three transactions made to American web sites, could there be a connection? Although the original letter comes from America the reply envelope enclosed is to what must be an accommodation address in Gloucester Road London. The Domain that bassjunkiez.com is really registered with is 123-reg.co.uk.

    Tuesday:

    I contacted them today It took three calls before finding a number that produced a human being but at least I got through on a freephone number from Say no to 0870. They did confirm that the Domain was registered to Abdullah Mohammed who had given my address. They would not give me his E-Mail address or tell me the phone number that he had given them or even the area code.

    They said that they had done security checks on him.... Oh Yeah? They would not cancel his domain name even though it has been obtained fraudulently.

    The domain had been paid for on the day of the fraudulent transactions on my account. None of the fraudulent payments had been to directly to 123-reg.co.uk but there had been a payment for what I take to be the amount needed to create the account to a Paypal account. They advised me to contact the police who I do not think would be interested.

    I asked them for the address of their legal department and they gave it to me, I may write to them. I then phoned my credit card company and told them the story but they were not very interested. I pointed out that the card used had just been reissued and only had two transactions on it before the fraudulent usage. One was in a XXX shoe shop and the other over the internet to pay for my annual membership to ZZZ racecourse. The racecourse one was the only one that needed me to give my address. The course recently phoned me to ask if I am renewing my membership. I told them of my problem earlier this year and asked if they had any other reports of fraudulent card use and got a negative answer. Being cautious I renewed by giving them a cheque. I saw a passing cop when I out today and told him the story. He suggested phoning the station with the story as they may know of Abdullah Mohammed from other scams. I phoned the station and they had no interest as it had happened some time ago.

    Today:

    More on the scam. I did a domain search using Whois. Go to whois.sc/ put in bassjunkiez.com and up comes Abdullah living in my house and his E-Mail address. I resisted sending the scamming B****r an E-Mail.

  • Just an update in case anybody is not aware. Virgin Media had their records hacked last autumn and thousand of people had their address books hacked out of that information. There is a facebook group "virgin media hacking and spam". I first discovered when I started getting bounce backs against the virgin account I closed in March 2015 a few weeks ago. Since I closed the account there is nothing I can do to change password or anything like that so it continues although I have managed to eliminate them from my inbox. Of course virgin deny it is their end and blame customers despite growing evidence.

    The point is , if you get an e mail from somebody you know with a virgin account usually "this is really cool" or "this may help you" with a link DO NOT CLICK ON IT.

  • Unfortunately there are many big companies who have had security breaches including the likes of talk talk, Google, eBay, LinkedIn, etc, etc. In addition many smaller and medium sized businesses. Cyber hacking and crime is a big business and is very sophisticated.

  • I was recently 'hacked' by an Asian (sounding) man who said he was from Microsoft (Windows) , and he was aware that my laptop had a problem. I have had a few of these calls over the past year , and I am usually very abrupt and hang up. I foolishly tried to learn more of the organisation that was responsible, and very soon found myself under their control.

    Fortunately I contacted the Natwest Fraud Team, while still talking to the hacker on my landline. Natwest advised to cease talking to them, and allow the Fraud Team to take over . But this was after they had extracted £254 from my account .

    The money was later refunded by Natwest from a Bank in Thailand and the only expense I had was to clean my laptop (£60 at Currys).

    Nasty experience but I learned two good lessons from the Natwest Fraud Team.

    1. Microsoft /Windows will never ring you to solve problems on your computer.

    2. Calls on your landline from anyone, (especially ones with Asian accents....they were Nigerians in the past.) who wishes to repair your computer/laptop is a Fraudster. Hang Up.

    Thanks for your very informative posts on Health Unlocked.

    Diagnosed pAF 2010, Ablation at St Barts 2012. Happily (?) on Warfarin and able to spend my winters at my home in Goa. No stress.

  • I always say "Actually it's a company computer" and it's suprising how fast they get off the line.

    A trick I used a few times when I wasn't in a rush and to waste their time was to ask them which computer it was because I have five. Then when they said they weren't sure I said well your diagnostics must have picked that up and when they said no I said that I know that you can but it'll take 5 to get 10 mins but I'll hang on. They then hung on and said can't tell so I asked which version of Windows (at the time three or four versions were around). When they said which I said that four operated that system so I then pretended to boot them up one at the time taking 5 to 10 minutes a time. That was the beauty of the older versions of Windows and it made lots of noises and beeps as it booted up and I was using phone on hands free.

    Wasted an hour of their time. Then on the fourth one I said I know it must be this one because it always takes ages to boot up and takes a few attempts and this is the one I have the money software on. I could hear the delight in their voice. Anyway pretended to boot up six or seven times without success. By this time on one occasion it was over two hours!!! I knew that unless I was logged in and connected to the internet there was nothing that they could do and they were so hooked as it had the money software on it!!!

    I then said so sorry this won't boot up I'll have to try another day because I have to go for doctors appointment. If only they could have seen that I was using one old computer has hat was very slow to boot up each time!!!

    I must have really got them hooked because a fe days later same person phoned back but could only waste about 45 mins these one time as I obviously knew which computer it was.

    They didn't ring back again!!! I have had others since though.

    Wicked though and saved a few people falling foul of their ploy!!!!