Lloyds Bank letter scam: how to stay safe

Lloyds customers are getting letters through the post warning them of 'unusual transactions' on their personal current account. Here's how to avoid falling for this deceptive fraud.

A clever new postal scam is tricking Lloyds customers into handing over their banking details.

The letter looks genuine, featuring the Lloyds logo. It also includes a customer service address and a signature from Jamie Smith, a customer relationship manager.

Check your credit report for any suspicious activity

How it works

Customers receive a letter through the post warning them of ‘unusual transactions’ on their personal current account. It asks the customer to call a phone number to ‘confirm the transactions are genuine’. The number, 08438 49 58 65, is not a geniune Lloyds number.

When you call, you’ll be taken through to a fake Lloyds automated service, but it seems perfectly legitimate.

A welcome message is played to the caller and they’re asked to enter their credit card number or account number and sort code followed by their date of birth.

They’re then asked to enter the first and last digit of their security number.

The automated voice will say “sorry, I’ve been unable to match the digits” and ask for the third and fifth number of the security code.

Customers are put on hold to wait for an adviser and asked if they’d be willing to give feedback in a two-minute questionnaire. After that they’re asked to type in their phone number so they can get a call back.

All the while, the scammers are collecting the victim's personal details.

Cliff Moyce, global head of financial services at DataArt, told the Telegraph that the letters were “brilliant in their simplicity and psychological insight” as online scams are more common.

He said that “people who might be suspicious ordinarily may have their judgement impaired.”

Testing it out

The Telegraph tried phoning the helpline number several times using a range of fake account details.

They were put through to people with Liverpudlian and Scottish accents who were very inquisitive over the course of the phone call. 

Though it is believed that some callers are put through to genuine call centres in some cases, to try and prove that the phone calls are real.

The phone number has been blocked but Lloyds is still awaiting confirmation that it has been completely closed.  

Read more on How to avoid scams and rip-offs.

What the letter says

The letters seen by the Telegraph actually addressed people by name, making them all the more convincing. Below is an example of what a typical letter states:

Dear xxx

We have noticed some unusual transactions on your personal current account, please contact us on 08438 49 58 65 to confirm these transactions are genuine.

Yours sincerely

Jamie Smith

Customer Relationship Manager

Check your credit report for any suspicious activity

Keep your eyes peeled:

5 ways to beat scammers while shopping

Simple trick that makes Visa card hack "frighteningly easy"

How to spot a fake banknote

Scammers use bank's own safeguard to trick you


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