GMB: Adam Rickitt discusses being scammed out of £49,500
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A Twitter user, this week informed Santander of a suspicious email they had received and asked whether it was a genuine email from the bank or a scam. @charlyadtweet tweeted: “@santanderuk Is this Email genuine OR a Scam?” and subsequently provided a link to an email. The social media user attached a screenshot of the fake email which claimed his Santander account had been “temporarily disabled” as a “safety precaution”.
It also said his debit and credit card has also been disabled, as it asserted they had tried to contact the person concerned, but were unable to do so.
The email said: “We have been trying to contact you. However, we are unable to reach you. As a safety precaution, we have temporarily disabled access to your account and debit or credit.
“This might be due to either of the following reasons: A recent change in your personal information (eg: billing address, phone number), or submitting incorrect payment information during online payment process.”
The correspondence went on to claim the individual needed to “verify” his account with the supposed bank contact “immediately”.
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It continued: “For banking with a higher level of security, we need you to verify your account with us immediately.
“This will help up in safeguarding your account and financial assets in the future.”
However, this was all part of an elaborate scam specifically designed to get people to part with their bank account details, with fraudsters using a reputable name for their own nefarious purposes.
Santander responded to the tweet, confirming the email was not from them and that it was a scam, stating it was “well spotted” by the individual.
The bank also highlighted a good way of identifying a scam email is to check if there is a link included which a person would need to click in order to complete an action.
Santander confirmed it “would never do this”, and so any email with this feature claiming to be from the bank is a fake.
It then added in a situation like this, the bank would explain how someone could change their details, and would tell them to log onto their official online banking in order to do so.
The high street bank explained scam emails can be reported to Santander’s fraud team at [email protected].
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To help their customers, Santander has an entire page on its website dedicated to spotting the different scams which are circulating in the UK.
The aforementioned example is commonly known as “phishing”, and involves scammers posing as someone else such as a trusted organisation or authority.
They will then will ask someone for personal data either directly or through a link to a fake website.
Santander warned that once the scammer has received this data, such as bank details or personal information, they could go on to use it to commit crimes such as identity theft and bank fraud.
As a result, the bank urged people not to reply to emails from an unknown source and to avoid clicking on links embedded into emails.
This is because phishing emails are sent to a vast number of randomly generated addresses and clicking on these links can verify someone’s active email address for further malicious emails.
The bank also reiterated it will never send someone an email, text or website link asking someone to enter their Santander Connect or card details, or to “carry out a test payment”.
If someone receives a suspicious email claiming to be from Santander, the bank urged people to forward it to their fraud team and then delete the email from their inbox.
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