Scam alert: Bank of Ireland warns customers, especially the elderly, of new tactic fraudsters are now using – – Our News, Your Views

Scam alert: Bank of Ireland warns customers, especially the elderly, of new tactic fraudsters are now using

Bank of Ireland is warning customers about a new tactic now being used by fraudsters to trick people into handing over their bank details.

There has been a major increase in the number of cases of fraud across Ireland which stemmed from the Covid-19 lockdowns.

With most people working remotely, security barriers were weakened for many companies, giving scammers the perfect opportunity to strike.

As the public becomes warier of unsolicited emails, texts and calls, fraudsters are doubling down on their efforts to access customers’ accounts by first contacting them by text and following up with phone calls to convince them to hand over their details.

Once they gain access to the accounts, funds are then transferred into money-mule accounts or spent immediately on expensive items including electrical goods.

Over the last two weeks, the number of fraudulent text messages followed up by phone calls detected by Bank of Ireland’s Fraud Prevention Team has increased by 40% when compared to the previous month.

With that in mind, experts at BOI have highlighted what you need to look out for:

Bank of Ireland-branded texts saying to expect a call from the Bank of Ireland. If the customer takes the call, the fraudster will try to convince them to reveal their card details, and then tell them that they need to swipe a ‘fake notification’ on their app to complete an update process. This ‘fake notification’ is, in fact, a real transaction being carried out by the fraudster.

Bank of Ireland-branded texts giving a fake phone number to call. If a customer calls, they are duped into giving card details and again, sometimes asked to swipe a ‘fake notification’ which is, in fact, a real transaction.

An Post or HSE branded fake texts that then lead to ‘phishing’ websites. These websites are used to collect credit or debit card numbers and customer account login details.

In some cases, where a customer gives a phone number but not full login information, there will be a follow-up phone call from the fraudsters to obtain details and gain access to their account.

According to Mirror, speaking about the increased risk of being conned out of money, Edel McDermott, Head of Fraud, Bank of Ireland: “Fraudsters are becoming increasingly persistent in their attempts to steal people’s money. Fraudulent text messages are now being followed up by phone calls from fraudsters to convince people to hand over their details. Be vigilant if you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from your bank, credit card company or another company you may trust – even if you get a text first that tells you to expect the call. No matter what story you are told, do not give away your card, account, or banking details. End the call immediately and do not call the number back if you are suspicious. And remember, do not click on links or call any numbers you receive in a text message. You can call your bank using the number on the back of your card or a listed phone number.”

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