My Mother scammed out of £8.2k in telephone scam.

Sparkybhoy88
Sparkybhoy88 Posts: 5 Forumite
First Post
Hi, firstly I'm not sure where to put this as I couldn't find a category for scams.

Last Wednesday morning my 73yr old Mother received a phone call from "Sky" saying they had a special discount available for pensioners, my Mother doesn't recall the full conversation but for some reason it lead to her calling her bank, naturally on the same line. At this point it's clear to me he hasn't cleared the line.

The "bank" answered and said she need to speak to their fraud department and transferred her, again she doesn't fully recall the conversation but it involved her attempting to enter her details via the keypad but then he told her it wasn't working but he could help at his end, I suspect, though she denies this, she's spoken her login details, I'm pretty sure at this point he's logged into her account and transferred all the money from it.

To add insult to injury, they used Conner as the transaction reference.

She's spoken to the Police and the bank who naturally say they will investigate, however neither of them are likely to attempt to recover or refund as firstly it's not the job of the Police and secondly it's not in the Bank's interest to do so.

My question is, is there anywhere she can go to who will act in her best financial interest? This was all the money she had in the world and her pension had also just been paid in.

Thank you in advance.

Update

After long discussions with my Mother, the scam didn't go as she first indicated.
She did receive a bogus phone call purporting to be from Sky, however the call made her suspicious as it had asked who she banked with, so she phoned Sky and asked if they had called and they confirmed that they hadn't, she then phoned her bank and told them that she had received a bogus call and instructed them under no circumstances should any high value bank transfers be authorised as it would not be herself.

Later that day when the bogus bank representative called he claimed there had been suspicious activity on her account that morning and instructed her to move her money from her account into a "safe" account, he also told her during the process she would receive a text from her bank and just to reply with Y, this she did, he also told her not to use her bank account for 48hrs, for obvious reasons.

I feel this puts her in a strong position to lay the blame of negligence firmly at the bank's door. (Her phone call to them). 
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Comments

  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 35,242 Forumite
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    It's in the bank's interest to attempt a refund, but it's unlikely they'll be able to do so.

    All she can do is wait to see if the bank can do anything, but keep your expectations low.  Don't let her pay anyone else who says they can help her get the money back.  She's likely to receive further calls.
  • lincroft1710
    lincroft1710 Posts: 17,608 Forumite
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    This is most unfortunate.

    Unless her bank can reverse the transaction, sadly there is very little that can be done. It would be advisable for her to get a new account number or a completely new account, as the scammers have her details.
    If you are querying your Council Tax band would you please state whether you are in England, Scotland or Wales
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,252 Forumite
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    and secondly it's not in the Bank's interest to do so.
    That is a strange thing to say.  Why would the bank not have any interest?

    My question is, is there anywhere she can go to who will act in her best financial interest?
    The bank.

    Sadly, this is a common scam.   It also means your mum is likely to be targeted again as scammers pass on their "mugs lists" of people why are easily gullible.   This will be phone calls, mailshots, emails etc.   So, you need to tell her not to do that sort of thing again.


    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • dunstonh said:
    and secondly it's not in the Bank's interest to do so.
    That is a strange thing to say.  Why would the bank not have any interest?
    I feel it's not in the bank's interest as they would be the ones to be at a loss if they refunded.
  • tehone
    tehone Posts: 640 Forumite
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    Which bank?
    They should really for that amount of money tried to verify the transfer was a legit one via something like a OTP
    My bank also verifies me if I login from an unexpected/new place (includes different browser at home)
  • tehone said:
    Which bank?
    They should really for that amount of money tried to verify the transfer was a legit one via something like a OTP
    My bank also verifies me if I login from an unexpected/new place (includes different browser at home)
    Santander, they did the text verification, but the scammer had accounted for that, that shouldn't have been enough as my Mother had forewarned them she was concerned and not to authorise any transfers.
  • tehone
    tehone Posts: 640 Forumite
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    tehone said:
    Which bank?
    They should really for that amount of money tried to verify the transfer was a legit one via something like a OTP
    My bank also verifies me if I login from an unexpected/new place (includes different browser at home)
    Santander, they did the text verification, but the scammer had accounted for that, that shouldn't have been enough as my Mother had forewarned them she was concerned and not to authorise any transfers.


    I do feel Santander is in the wrong if the conversation you provided in the update is accurate, however the text they send is not a simple reply Y, is a code number like 65241 that you need to input on the web page / in the app to confirm the transaction, so the scammer would have needed this [I am basing this on my recent experiences with Santander - they are my bank]. They are also the bank that makes me provide a OTP when I login from a different location, so there should have been that security to bypass as well by the scammer.

    However given your mum spoke to them, I do feel they should have blocked this and they are partly liable for the loss and should refund your mother, their fraud team was quite good when I spoke to them recently about a similar case recently
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 26,612 Forumite
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    I feel it's not in the bank's interest as they would be the ones to be at a loss if they refunded.
    The Bank won't be refunding anything. The best you can hope for is a reversal of the transaction. 
  • tehone said:
    tehone said:
    Which bank?
    They should really for that amount of money tried to verify the transfer was a legit one via something like a OTP
    My bank also verifies me if I login from an unexpected/new place (includes different browser at home)
    Santander, they did the text verification, but the scammer had accounted for that, that shouldn't have been enough as my Mother had forewarned them she was concerned and not to authorise any transfers.


    I do feel Santander is in the wrong if the conversation you provided in the update is accurate, however the text they send is not a simple reply Y, is a code number like 65241 that you need to input on the web page / in the app to confirm the transaction, so the scammer would have needed this [I am basing this on my recent experiences with Santander - they are my bank]. They are also the bank that makes me provide a OTP when I login from a different location, so there should have been that security to bypass as well by the scammer.

    However given your mum spoke to them, I do feel they should have blocked this and they are partly liable for the loss and should refund your mother, their fraud team was quite good when I spoke to them recently about a similar case recently
    It was just a Y reply by text, ther scammer even told her to expect it.
    The bank did manage to recover £1700 from the scammer's account but have denied liability on the rest so she is going to the Ombudsman.
  • glennevis
    glennevis Posts: 640 Forumite
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    The only time Santander ever texted me requiring a simple 'Y' reply from me was after other security checks and questions when a high-value transfer was set up by me. And the txt asking for a "Y" reply was received EXACTLY one hour after they sent me the following txt:

    "*Take Five to stop fraud, don't be a scam victim* We'll send you a text in about an hour from 447xxxxxxxx to check some recent activity on your account. If you’ve been asked to transfer your money to a safe account, don’t proceed. Hang up on any caller and phone us immediately. Requests like this will be fraudulent."

    So I would assume your mother received the same alert, giving her one hour to phone Santander to say that she had been asked to transfer money to a safe account. Instead she chose to answer the txt she received from Santander with "Y".

    Don't see what more Santander could have done.

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