Just avoided an attempt to fleece my bank accounts! (1 Viewer)

Abacist

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I have been a long term customer of Eurobell which was taken over by Telewest then became Virgin Media. They dug the streets to deploy optical fibre early on and provide a Broadband, TV and Telephone service to personal and business customers. More recently I have had more than my fair share of aggro with their email service with them cutting me off because there has been suspicious traffic on the account. Each time I have to spend a morning phoning, waiting and getting through to the fraud department to reset my password etc. Its pretty much become a monthly inconvenience.

Today an Asian woman 'phoned from Virgin Media to say that they need to sort out my internet/broadband/router problem which was spewing out loads of crap and they needed to sort it out. I naturally asked how could I satisfy myself that it was really Virgin Media? She said her colleague would deal with that in a moment. She passed me over to someone else who got me to load something that demonstrated over 800 faults.

At his point he asked what other devices used our internet connection and he said that they should be turned off and not used to avoid corruption during the repair process apart from my iPhone and he asked me to download an App from the App Store. I had to go into this which generated a number which he asked for then told me to exit.
They would now download the software to my Mac to resolve the issue. I did what I was told. The only website they asked me to access was Virgin Media and were able to confirm my Virgin Media account number, Area code and monthly direct debit.

After a few moments he decided that the router needed to be replaced and said he had booked for one to be fitted quoting and checking with me a convenient date & time.

He then advised that I would be due compensation for their poor service and the router faults. When he asked me to start typing the bank name into the browser I smelt the rate and hung up. I deleted the mobile phone App and the downloaded software on the MAC. He kept 'phoning me back to either jam the phone or to try to persuade me to continue but I ignored it and he gave up.

All my bank accounts are secure and I 'phoned the fraud department of two to report the matter and one is cancelling our current internet banking set up and App and will replace once I have presented ID at a branch. The other is replacing our debit cards.

It makes me wonder how they knew I was a Virgin customer or was it an inside job? Of course now that the dust and panic have settled I see that the software they were using was so that they could see my computer screen to see me type in the bank details which of course I refused to do and cut them off. They did the same with the iPhone so that they could see any bank ikons of Apps on my phone and they picked on two which happened not to be personal accounts so that made me think twice as well. The instruction not to use other iPhones or iPads was to prevent us phoning or reporting to bank apps the fraud attempt. I told them that if they were genuine then they could refund me to the account that they take my direct debit from.

Please be careful out there. I regard myself as reasonably switched on and astute financially but all the previous aggro with VM emails & resetting passwords made it seem so normal that they were 'phoning to resolve an issue!

I have also reported the detailed methodology to Action Fraud in the hope that it helps Police Intelligence.
 

Nanniemate

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There is a program on BBC about fraudster and scammers and this is a recognised known method. The program also use ethical hackers to see what information is out there . Even posting on here posts can be read outside of MHF. even a winge about virgin on social media and they know who you broadband supplier is then a little look at companies house and hey-ho there's your business if not home address. Then have a look at your friends on FB Post a few pics of parties mention a wedding ceremony, anniversary, birthday even your first holiday and these often links to memorable dates.
Just have a look and see how much info you have shared , when I say you I mean that in the broadest term .everyone.
It maybe worth going back and looking at what is out there and what you have posted.
 
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Abacist

Abacist

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I'm glad no damage seems to have been done and I'm not trying to be argumentative but surely alarm bells should have been ringing when asked to download an app?
All I can say is that they were very natural and believable given the history with VM. I have been kicking myself all day. I posted this to warn others so don’t need anyone to rub it in !
 

Nanniemate

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All I can say is that they were very natural and believable given the history with VM. I have been kicking myself all day. I posted this to warn others so don’t need anyone to rub it in !
The program in on the bbc 1 right now, it is frightening how manipulative these people are. Even the bank when a young man with them on the phone walked into the bank to ask was it them and was it a scam, refused to pay him his ÂŁ8000 back as he had not taken enough care, Shocking I hope at the end of the program the bank steps up to help him
 
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Banks are stepping up, unfortunately they are also stopping genuine transactions and blocking accounts, 6 weeks abroad with no way of getting cash from bank anyone else? Had to transfer from account to another, know allowed transfer, and then get that person to obtain cash for me. Joined RAC and they didn't allow payment to go for 4 days, it's a bit too near that time of the year to go about changing banks, but will be doing so soon, unless someone points me to a good deal with free overseas spending,.
Apologies for hi-jacking the thread and glad you realised what was happening in time.
 
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Abacist

Abacist

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I use Halifax credit card abroad to pay for everything like fuel, supermarket, restaurants etc. I buy Euros before I go when the exchange rate is good and take cash with me. In reserve we have Fair FX cards like Revolut where you buy Euros in advance which are held on the card until you want to withdraw cash from the ATM with it when abroad.
 
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There are probably dozens of websites that you've entered name, address and your phone number in for things like parcel delivery confirmation. If that site also had the log of your IP address, it's easy to work out who your internet provider is.

If any one of those web sites gets hacked and the info sold on the dark web, scammers like these have all the info they need to confidence trick you as described above.

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Nanniemate

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Still dropping clangers and making it up as I go along
I use Halifax credit card abroad to pay for everything like fuel, supermarket, restaurants etc. I buy Euros before I go when the exchange rate is good and take cash with me. In reserve we have Fair FX cards like Revolut where you buy Euros in advance which are held on the card until you want to withdraw cash from the ATM with it when abroad.
You have just told them the next account they can target :whistle2: :eek:
 

Minxy

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Never EVER download anything onto your pc/phone/tablet/laptop that someone else has asked you to, even if it's from the Play store or the Apple alternative. Only ever do it if YOU need to and know exactly what you are downloading is genuine.
 
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I also suspect that scammers using a woman's voice to make first contact is a psychological trick to gain your confidence, and get you to drop your guard a bit.
 
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Never EVER download anything onto your pc/phone/tablet/laptop that someone else has asked you to, even if it's from the Play store or the Apple alternative. Only ever do it if YOU need to and know exactly what you are downloading is genuine.
The software these scammers use is genuine. It's just a remote desktop client. Once you let them have remote access... it's out of your control.

Some of them just use visual tricks on your own PC to scam you out of your bank account. Others will also install nasties under your nose, either to finish the job off under stealth, or to make further use like using your PC as part of a botnet.
 

Minxy

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The software these scammers use is genuine. It's just a remote desktop client. Once you let them have remote access... it's out of your control.

Some of them just use visual tricks on your own PC to scam you out of your bank account. Others will also install nasties under your nose, either to finish the job off under stealth, or to make further use like using your PC as part of a botnet.
I'm not saying the app doesn't works, that's a given, it's whether it is genuine for the organisation it's purports to be for... this wasn't for a genuine kosher company but someone pretending the software was from Virgin media. No way would I ever download a remote desktop client onto any of my machines EVER.

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Aug 26, 2008
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The software these scammers use is genuine. It's just a remote desktop client. Once you let them have remote access... it's out of your control.

Some of them just use visual tricks on your own PC to scam you out of your bank account. Others will also install nasties under your nose, either to finish the job off under stealth, or to make further use like using your PC as part of a botnet.

One reason why I won't use wifi at home. As a last line of defence, I unplugged the cable from my router while on the phone. The scammer could no longer see or control my screen and started to complain. I took my laptop ASAP to a trusted computer expert to uninstall the remote desktop client and sweep it for any malware or nasties because this stuff is above my level of competence.
 

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