Numbers duped by credit card PIN scam rocket

John Fitzsimons
by Lovemoney Staff John Fitzsimons on 07 December 2012  |  Comments 13 comments

Fraudsters have had a successful year duping victims into handing over their card and PIN.

Numbers duped by credit card PIN scam rocket

A telephone-based scam, aimed at fooling victims into revealing their PIN, has grown significantly this year according to figures from Financial Fraud Action UK and the UK Cards Association.

The scam has caused more than £7.5 million worth of fraud on credit and debit cards in the first eight months of the year, with more than 1,600 people falling victim.

What’s interesting is just how prevalent this scam has become. The money taken by fraudsters up to August is already ten times the amount stolen through this method in all of 2011!

How the scam works

The fraudster calls you, posing as someone from your bank, or perhaps the police. They claim that there has been fraud on your account and so your card will need to be collected and replaced.

The police have suggested that fraudsters may attempt to win your confidence by convincing you to hang up and call the bank for confirmation. However, they stay on the line and pose as a bank representative.

The fraudsters will either ask for your PIN or ask you to key the PIN into your telephone keypad before sending a courier to collect the card. As you’ve guessed by now, the card is actually collected (along with the PIN) by one of the scammers.

Who the scam is targeting

It will come as no surprise that it’s the elderly and vulnerable who are most likely to fall prey to this scam. The average age of victims is 69, with particular hotspots in London, Surrey and Strathclyde.

What’s scary is that Financial Fraud Action’s research has found that more than one in ten do not realise they should never reveal their PIN to anyone.

So while you may be a bit more savvy and unlikely to be caught out by a scam like this, it’s worth making sure that any older or vulnerable people in your family or friends are aware that a PIN is not something to be handed out to anyone.

A couple of other things to bear in mind:

  • Your bank will never ask you for your PIN
  • Your bank will never ring you to say they will come to your home to collect your card
  • You should always ensure you can hear a dial tone before calling your bank, and make sure you do so on an advertised number.

More on scams:

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How to protect your PINs and passwords

Don't be a victim of ID fraud

The five most common types of fraud

The scams that target the elderly

How credit card cloning works

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Comments (13)

  • yocoxy
    Love rating 152
    yocoxy said

    Slightly confusing headline.. Numbers falling? No, they're rocketing..

    Before anyone corrects me, I realise that it is grammatically correct

    I'm still surprised that anyone falls for this but the point about warning elderly relatives is a good one. I'll send my 82 year old dad a Facebook message.

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • vulcanite
    Love rating 39
    vulcanite said

    And in my Britain, anyone preying on the elderly in this fashion would go to prison for 20 years... and don't worry about your human rights old chap, you'll get some bread with your thin gruel.

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • John Fitzsimons
    Love rating 43
    John Fitzsimons said

    Fair point on the headline yocoxy, have changed it

    John

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Nikgee
    Love rating 25
    Nikgee said

    One major point missed up there is that the bank would reissue you with a new card and tell you to cut the old one in half.

    The banks could add a flyer in their post with details of how to avoid such scams, but they wont, because they make more money on the insurance, so effectively that means the banks are encouraging the law breakers by not trying to reduce the fraud in the first place

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • electricblue
    Love rating 769
    electricblue said

    20 years isn't enough of a sentence for those preying on vulnerable people. Unfortunately we have allowed in a lot of Eastern European criminal gangs with zero morality and they are the main reason that fraud continues to skyrocket.

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • OldJock
    Love rating 1
    OldJock said

    This sort of thing has been on the go for ages.

    I just wish credit card organisations sent out a large red warning notice to all cardholders advising them never to reveal their PIN as such a request MUST be fraud.

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • oldhenry
    Love rating 343
    oldhenry said

    This is part of Cameron's growth economy. One person's bad luck is another's good fortune. The scammers will get a seat in the House of Lord if they scam enough and become a treasury of a politcal party - perhaps?

    Report on 07 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • Tanni
    Love rating 92
    Tanni said

    Life in prison or capital punishment for those who do such crimes...oh wait that would never happen as our politicians and their bankster mates will end up swaying on the noose. Our government does the same thing; wins your support as the opposition and then strangles you good.

    Still do not get it? Look at the leveson inquiry; millions spent,,dozens of police officers, MP's, journalists, business people all implicated in spying and invading privacy or distorting and even withholding information; what happened at the end....yes the government appointed inquiry has asked the wrong doers to suggest ways on how to regulate themselves. This is the modern day version of robbers code...one for all and all for one. Dick Turpin wore a mask...these guys just take the biscuit as they are the mafia.

    Report on 08 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Mankey
    Love rating 2
    Mankey said

    Surely it's simply one of those situations where you need to take responsibility for yourself rather than blaming someone else. Why would you just give away your PIN to just anyone that asked? Isn't that completely stupid?

    Report on 08 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • InterViagra
    Love rating 0
    InterViagra said

    Surely this could be stopped easily enough? I'm in my late sixties and would expect to

    be targeted sooner or later,I have encountered every other one going. So I take the call

    and play dumb,not too difficult for me. The 'Courier' turns up at a pre-arranged time to collect my card and is arrested by my friendly neighbourhood bobby. This would only need to happen 2 or 3 times and be reported in the press and it would stop overnight.

    Report on 08 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Tanni
    Love rating 92
    Tanni said

    Defrauding people is wrong. Duping people is wrong. You can't blame the victim. Many years ago watchdog/bbc reported criminals cloning cards of rich people by skimming their details on to other blank cards. That is theft. That is fraud. All those blaming the victims need to be victims so you can understand the reality of this crime which is just ignoredby the authorities.

    Ps your average bobby wouldn't spot this crime happening even if the criminal courier arrived dressed up as a typical ex con in an orange HM prison jump suit with a mask on and carrying a bag. Long gone are the days when police would catch people on the act, they rely on the intelligence and data gathered from the public now...a public which is laughed at when their credit card details are stolen. I for one have no confidence in the police or judicial system full stop.

    Report on 09 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • mark66jarret
    Love rating 0
    mark66jarret said

    Personally would give wrong PIN, because the bank will know your fibbing won't they, chop up card throw 1/2 of it away before putting in an envelope for the courier. When they arrive get them to sign for it take pictures of them with your envelope for security purposes & note the reg number of the vehicle then call the cops to report what you have don't. Can't see them coming anywhere near you if you have a camera.

    Also as a precaution invite all your mate's round in case they come on heavy and as witnesses who can help defend you in case of assault and if they were all weight lifters or bouncers all the better.

    Report on 17 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Latent
    Love rating 21
    Latent said

    Give a false PIN. When the courier arrives invite him in. (Have some mates around already). Lock the door and call the police....

    When the police arrive they will arrest you and your mates for kidnap and you'll get a criminal record, big fine and maybe sent down.

    Simples.

    Report on 14 February 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves

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