A UK e-mail recipient is keen to highlight a series of scams which she believes may dupe people into disclosing sensitive information. The e-mails purporting to be from banks encourage recipients to enter their account and passwords details.
And the woman, who does not hold any accounts with any of the banks, is keen to alert people to this as she was unaware of any such scam prior to receiving the emails. The woman said she received four different emails in February, all of which appeared official and authentic. One was from ‘Nationwide’ (firstname.lastname@example.org) stating that her account details needed to be updated as part of their continuing commitment to protect the account and reduce fraud on their website.
The e-mail included a link which the customer could click on to send personal details. Another e-mail alleging to be from ‘Egg’ was received (email@example.com) alerting the customer to the fact they could not verify her current information and inviting her to click on a link to update this information.
An e-mail also arrived from the ‘Royal Bank of Scotland’ (RBS) (firstname.lastname@example.org) stating that there had been a mis-match of access code between her security details and that she needed to re-activate her account. Again a link was provided to click on. A rogue telephone number was also given, according to the recipient.
The fourth e-mail was allegedly from ‘Natwest’ (email@example.com) stating that they were making ‘exciting changes’ to her online banking experience.
“They needed verification for Online Banking to remain active. They also stated that this would protect my account from ID theft. Again a link was provided,” she told me. She pointed out that in the email ‘Natwest’ gave the name of their head of Online Banking as ‘Mark Banks!’ The woman has contacted all the banks by telephone alerting them to the emails. However they all say they are aware that a scam is currently taking place.
“Nationwide even stated that they had received thousands of emails from customers expressing their concern about the scam. I was not aware that any scam was taking place. What worries me is that a lot of innocent people could unwittingly provide crooks with their details as the emails all look official and feed on people’s current insecurities around identity fraud by stressing the importance of clicking on the link in order to prevent identity theft, and to ensure that our security was not breached,” she told me.
The woman pointed out that she does not have any accounts with the banks.
“However, I feel very strongly that people need to be made aware that this scam is happening and to avoid getting caught out.”