May 25th, 2012

A scam that deserves a round of applause…

There’s a credit card scam doing the rounds at the moment which is the work of a genius.  Unfortunately it’s a criminal genius.  Here’s how it works…

You get a call allegedly from the fraud department of your bank.  The story is that your card has been cloned and used for fraudulent purposes.  They’ll tell you of a number of transactions on your account and you can agree each one to confirm you haven’t made it.  As your card has been cloned they’ll explain that they need to check it wasn’t your card before refunding your account.  To do this they’ll send a courier round to collect the card.

Beginning to smell a rat?

Well they’ve covered that too – quite brilliantly.

They’ll ask you to hang up and then call them back using the fraud reporting number on the back of your card. That way you’ll know you’re dealing with your own bank.

So, you hang up and dial the number on your card and get put back through to the person you’ve just been speaking to.  Perfect hey?  What has actually happened though is that when you hung up you didn’t actually terminate the call. On a land line the call is only terminated when the caller hangs up.  So, when you picked up the phone again you’re still connected to the first call.  Only now the scammer is playing a recording of a dialling tone! You dial your bank’s number but all you’re really doing is making your phone bleep.

Having gained your trust the scammer will now try to obtain as much information as possible and may end up with your PIN number and your card.

So, be careful out there – and if you’ve ever got the hint of suspicion that you’re being scammed then terminate the call.  Your real bank won’t mind you being cautious.


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John manages a wide portfolio of owner managed businesses and oversees the smooth operation of the firm’s payroll department.

After obtaining his degree in mathematics from the University of Liverpool, John joined Jonathan Ford & Co in 2004 and qualified as a chartered accountant four years later. John likes to keep abreast of developments in tax and accounting and is responsible for the mentoring of junior staff.

Outside of work, John enjoys keeping fit and is a Liverpool FC season ticket holder.

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