The details below are from the victim of the scam, a Surrey resident.
We received a call from ‘BT’ telling us we had not responded to the last two bills and our phone was about to be disconnected. My partner, fearing a scam as we had not received any bills asked for their telephone number so that he could call them back. ‘Andrew’ gave his number as 0800 471 4777 and my partner waited for the line to close before calling this number back. It sounded genuine as there was a recorded message from ‘BT’ telling him that they would put him through to the next available operator. ‘Andrew’ came back on the phone and my partner paid the amount on his bank card.
My partner then contacted the BT number in the telephone book who said that there was nothing owing on his account. We immediately cancelled the bank card and rang the 0800 number back and spoke to ‘Andrew’ again. ‘Andrew’ said the reason BT had told him there was nothing owing on his account was because we had just paid the money owing on his bank card. We told him we had cancelled his bank card fearing it was a scam so ‘Andrew’ said we would need to provide another bank card in order that the phone would not be cut off. So using another bank card we did as we did not want the hassle of the phone being disconnected.
Barclays Fraud Office phoned us the next day to say that amounts were being taken out of my bank account as follows: £1 Hot Wire in France, £350.81 at Hot Wire in France, £454.00 TRAVEL RESERVATION in United Kingdom. So the card has now been cancelled. We have phoned BT to report this number but it is still active.
They wished for everyone to be warned not to respond to these threats when given this number to ring.
Since receiving this, I did a bit of research online and there are details about this scam on the following link:
Best advice I can give is mirrored on the site above. If you receive a call from any company that you are not expecting then:
- Ask for the caller’s name and department details and then end the call.
- Find a legitimate contact number for the company either in a bill, online on official website or a telephone book. (Don’t use a contact number provided by the caller).
- Prior to calling ensure that the line is cleared (wait for a dial tone).
- Call the company and ask to speak to the original caller by name – the company should have no issues with you doing this.