We are aware of fraudsters claiming to be from Action Fraud contacting victims using automated phone calls in order to gain remote access to their computers and drain bank accounts.
Victims are receiving cold-calls from fraudsters purporting to represent Action Fraud. When the calls are answered, an automated voice asks the responder to “press 1 if you have made a report to Action Fraud.” When the responder presses 1, they are transferred to a fraudster. Victims are informed that their computers have been hacked, which has led to their online bank account being compromised and funds being withdrawn. One particular victim was told that £40,000 had fraudulently left their account.
Questions that are commonly asked by fraudsters include asking whether the victim’s broadband router is displaying flashing lights, as well as asking for/confirming personal information.
This leads to the fraudster asking for remote access to the victim’s computer, via a remote access tool. Once the fraudster has gained remote access to the machine, they are often also able to access the victim’s online banking – either with permission or without. The fraudsters have used the names, “Officer John Thompson”, “David Jones” and have been using several different telephone numbers, with “02921328585” appearing on multiple occasions.
Victims have later discovered that it was not Action Fraud that had contacted them and accessed their computer and banking systems.