Gardaí in Donegal have issued an alert after a local woman almost fell victim to a banking phishing scam.
The woman recently received a call from someone pretending to be from the bank reporting fraudulent activity. The scammer then asked her to grant remote access to her computer to fix the issue. This allowed the caller to harvest the woman’s personal banking details.
The scammer almost managed to set up a fraudulent beneficiary onto the woman’s account to steal money, but alarm bells rang when she received an activation text from her bank.
Gardaí took to Facebook today to warn the public of this latest scam:
“Please advise elderly or vulnerable neighbours and friends of the fact that these scam calls are very common. Advise them to hang up should they receive such a call and to contact their bank directly. Advise them against giving personal details out over the phone regardless of who is calling. Genuine banks/businesses will not ask for personal details and they certainly will not ever request remote access to your PC.”
Gardaí confirmed that the caller’s number in this case started with 0044123.
They received the following details from the bank on the case:
“The lady concerned received a call from someone who informed her that the amount of €39 had been taken from her account.
“She was instructed to dial 1 if she wished to further discuss this deduction. She did so and she was transferred to someone who informed her that someone had tried to spend money from her account.
“The lady agreed to grant remote access to her PC to the caller and she then was instructed to log into her banking online facility. When this was done, the caller harvested the lady’s personal information. They set up a fraudulent beneficiary onto her account.
“To set up a beneficiary on an account an activation code is required and this was sent to the phone of the lady in question by text. She did not supply the caller with this code and therefore no funds were transferred to the fraudulent account.”