WARNING: Pensioners targeted by fraudsters pretending to be TV providers

The scammers may also request the victims identification documents, such as scanned copies of passports.
The scammers may also request the victims identification documents, such as scanned copies of passports.

There has been an increase in reports of fraudsters offering discounts on TV subscriptions to gain access to victims banks.

The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) have noticed an increase in Action Fraud reports where fraudsters are cold-calling victims, pretending to be from a Television provider offering a discount on their monthly subscription.

Victims have been told the following: their subscription needs to be renewed; that part or all, of the TV equipment has expired and they are due an upgrade on the equipment/subscription. In order to falsely process the discount, the fraudster asks victims to confirm or provide their bank account details.

The scammers may also request the victim’s identification documents, such as scanned copies of passports.

The fraudsters are using the following telephone numbers: “08447111444”, “02035190197” and “08001514141”.

A spokesman from the bureau said: "The fraudster’s voices are reported to sound feminine and have an Asian accent.

"Later victims make enquiries and then discover that their TV service provider did not call them and that the fraudster has made transactions using the victim’s bank account details."

This type of fraud is nationwide.

Since the beginning of this year (2018), there have been 300 Action Fraud Reports relating to this fraud. From the reports received, victims aged over 66 seem to be the most targeted.

What you need to do

• Don’t assume a phone call or email is authentic: Just because someone knows your basic details (such as your name and address or even your mother’s maiden name), it doesn’t mean they are genuine. Criminals can exploit the names of well-known companies in order to make their scams appear genuine.

• Don’t be rushed or pressured into making a decision: a genuine company won’t force you to make a financial decisions on the spot. Always be wary if you’re pressured to purchase a product or service quickly, and don’t hesitate to question uninvited approaches in case it’s a scam.

• Stay in control: Have the confidence to refuse unusual requests for personal or financial information. Always contact the company yourself using a known email or phone number, such as the one written on a bank statement or bill.

Visit Take Five (takefive-stopfraud.org.uk/advice/) and Cyber Aware (cyberaware.gov.uk) for more information about how to protect yourself online.