Watch out for this Phishing Scam

I had a phone call from a client the other day telling me that she’d just been ‘scammed’ and I thought (with her permissison) I’d anonomously share her story so others don’t get caught out..

First I’d like to point out that this isn’t the type of person to get ‘scammed’.  She is an intelligent, astute business woman that is fully aware of potential scams and I was suprised that this had happened to her

So, it all started with a text from Santander to say that they had approved her overdraft request, if that wasn’t correct then please call the number in the text message.

Incensed that she hadn’t applied for an overdraft and didn’t want one she called the number

The phone was answered by a very ‘British’ sounding lady and in my clients own words sounded ‘like a bored, uniterested jobsworth, the type that would work for a bank’.

She was asked to go through the standard security and was asked to provide 2 digits from her ‘secret pin’ – which she did.

Then after a few more questions and normall ‘stuff’ the lady said that the security hadn’t gone through and that she’d need to start it again – “could she please bear with her?”!

She was taken through security again and asked for the other 2 digits of her secret pin – now at this point she REFUSED!  Clever lady..

She was then informed that the lady had generated a OTP (One Time Payment) code, standard Santander practice and could she give her the code – again she REFUSED (Clever lady)

However whilst she was on the phone someone working with the ‘scammer’ called Santander and used the 2 digits of the security code that she had revealed and some other basic information to log into her telephone banking and set up some payments to go out of her account.

Now whether they were lucky with being asked those 2 digits or whether they just kept calling until they were asked for the digits they knew or whether they just said ‘oh I’ve got it wrong’ can I try again’ we won’t know but they were brazen enough to call the bank with scant information to set up payments.

She started to get frustrated with the woman on the phone as she’d been on the phone so long, was supposed to be meeting friends for lunch and was now 45 minutes late so ended up hanging up.

When she put the phone down and filled her husband in he asked the question “have you just been scammed?”

That’s when the penny dropped and she phone Santander..

AT NO POINT had she been suspicious

So on speaking to Santander she realised that while she was still on the phone to the scammer, payments started going out of her account.. and she was completely unaware

£99 pounds first, then another £100, then £200.. you get the jist.  The payments just got bigger and bigger

In all £400 was taken and a further £400 was blocked as suspicious activity  by Santander