Sunday, 16 June 2019

Scam Warning

I consider myself to be reasonably 'savvy' where scams are concerned but even so it appears that you can be scammed without even leaving home or loosing your card.
I refuse to pay any unnecessary bank overdraft charges, so keep a close eye on our accounts. Last week I noticed a discrepancy of £50 between the banks balance and my own which I could not understand. I, therefore, asked the bank for a printout showing the latest transactions over the past four weeks. I checked that all of the £50 withdrawals had been accounted for and all were present and correct. Next I asked my husband to check my own account figures whilst I went through the Bank Statement item by item. I came across three withdrawals just one week ago, all on the same day, from someone totally unknown. £20, £10, and another £20 cash to O2 UK PAY AND GO. Pay and go is precisely what they had done. They had made their name appear to be similar to the mobile phone company 'O2 Pay as you Go'. I found it rather confusing trying to work out how this could possibly happen as I still had my Debit Card safely in my hand. This is one of the reason why I do not like or use the contactless card waving business which takes your money without even requiring your pin number. Another confusing thing is that I never use my Debit Card for shopping or internet transactions, but simply for withdrawing cash. I always shield the pin number and make sure that the cash machine appears to have no hidden cameras. 
I contacted my bank straightaway and was put through to the fraud department who immediately seemed to recognise the scam, and said that they would return the money and cancel my card. A replacement card was sent to me which arrived the following day.
I have no idea at all just how this scam happened, but obviously it pays to keep a close eye on all of your account transactions. If I had not noticed the discrepancy and not cancelled the card then apparently the withdrawals would have continued.

31 comments:

  1. Yes that is scary, all those automatic payments, you have to be alert. Longing to the times with cash money in my pocket....

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  2. That is scary :( John uses contactless, but after every 5, I think, 'contactless' transactions, you have to enter your pin number. I think this is in case you lose your card it can only be used up to 5 times. John is also very savvy. I have a card, but I've never used it, as we always shop together or get cash out of the indoor machine. It's good that banks do recognise your spending habits and anything out of the ordinary is usually accepted and rectified. Best, Jane x

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    1. The trouble with contactless is that someone else can use a forged card with your numbers for up to five time too. I personally think that they should remove the possibility of this happening by always having you use your private pin number.

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  3. Replies
    1. I am pleased that I keep a watchful eye on our finances.

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  4. Dearest Rosemary,
    That indeed is very aggravating and such a waste of our time because some criminal scammed us!
    Hugs,
    Mariette

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    1. Dear Mariette - it causes a lot of distress and trouble - it took us one hour on the phone to get through to the right bank department. However, once we did, I admit that they acted very quickly. I am still totally confused as to how they managed to do it.

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  5. How interesting! Amazing how some peoples minds work.
    Good on you for noticing the error in the first place, you were indeed lucky on that point.

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    1. Whatever new fangled systems they bring in, there always seems to be shrewd crooks who can get around the systems. I don't understand why they don't use their obviously clever ability more constructively!

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  6. Clearly you can never be too cautious , thanks for the warning !

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    1. I relieved that the bank gave me my money back without any hesitation.

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  7. Thanks for that though I do keep a regular check on all transactions anyway. Glad that the situation was resolved without too much hassle.

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    1. I just don't understand how they did it without my card.

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  8. Your eagle eye has saved the day! Vigilance pays off.

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  9. I had this happen to me. The bank said it was not anything I had done. Scammers use computers to generate random card numbers until they hit on one which works. We are all vulnerable.

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    1. This is also what I had heard too, but I don't understand how they also know your name and your bank.

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    1. and hopefully useful should it happen to you too.

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  11. Unfortunately, the public at large are at ever-increasing risk of fraud and scams thanks to everything going online with the blessing of governments and big business hand in hand,.... payments, bank details, CV's for new jobs, self assessment forms for tax purposes, electronic spies in the house- smart meters, personal electronic assistants/ information collectors etc, cameras in cars and soon to be in homes UK wide... which will only get worse once 5G is introduced where your house computer will order food, pay bills, use your credit cards and money with or without your consent unless you opt out of it and go off grid altogether. The future will be bright and largely out of your control, run by robot 'help' i.e. 'covert surveillance'. Not paranoia but accurate facts for the times ahead. I'm honestly glad I'm the age I am and have lived most of my life as a free choice human doing my own thing, possibly the last generations to do so...

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    1. I feel exactly the same as you Bob - the world and what happens on a daily basis is more and more unrecognisable to me. I look back on my own childhood and youth now I think just how fortunate we were to grow up when we did.

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  12. What an unfortunate and distressing thing to happen. I'm very glad that your bank quickly refunded your money. Scammers are everywhere, it seems.

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    1. I still find It confusing just how they could have done it without my card but apparently they use computers to select random numbers until they hit the jackpot. It is a pity that they do not use their apparent knowledge more wisely.

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  13. Hello Rosemary, I am sorry that you had to go through all that. I should keep a closer watch over my own accounts, especially since I have a large number of small transactions, and unauthorized ones would be difficult to spot easily.

    I have heard that some criminals can read credit and other cards even from a distance, but you can buy small metallicized envelopes for cards and passports, which cost very little. You may want investigate these.
    --Jim

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    1. Hello Jim and thanks for the tips which I will investigate. However, I have learnt now that the crooks use computers to select random numbers until they hit the jackpot.
      I personally think that the banks were unwise to remove the fact that you can get money from cards now without even entering your personal pin number although I never do that. Having to enter your own pin number does add an extra level of security.

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  14. Lucky that you noticed it. I had the "pay without a pin" thingy removed from my card after reading about someone having a card stolen and used for lots of small transactions without a pin. I think the bank reimburses you but it is a lot of hassle.

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    1. The bank has reimbursed me but I must have spent a small fortune on the telephone call sorting it out - over an hour.
      My card wasn't even stolen which makes it even more confusing to understand.

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  15. Dear Rosemary, that is very disturbing -and how good that you noticed it! I have my bank account under steady watch -but there happen sometimes strange things, and it is very clever to look often.
    And: I noticed when I pay with cash (which in the last year I seldom did) it is another feeling if you give 400 Euro in cash for a dress (I start to think...) or if you pay with a card - then it seems so effortlessly...

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    1. Dear Britta - how right you are - handing over a bundle of notes rather than a card does make you think twice. That is a big problem with so many people today, they hand over their card without considering the consequences, which can and does often end with them getting into deep water.
      Keeping an eye on your accounts is, I think, crucial.

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