Tuesday 24 April 2018

Bank of Ireland issues warning over new 'number spoofing' scam

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Kyle Ewald

Bank of Ireland (BOI) has issued a warning to customers as fraudsters are using a new technique called “number spoofing” to steal account information.

A BOI spokesperson told Independent.ie that number spoofing is “quite a common type of fraud” in which “fraudsters deliberately change the telephone number to match that of a legitimate organisation and ask for personal information”.

According to the spokesperson, number spoofers use a device that can copy any number to make it look like they are calling from a business or location they are not.

Ken Hayes said his mother was almost involved in a number spoofing scam when she received a call from fraudsters that reflected BOI’s real number.

“They called my elderly mother a few weeks ago. When I called the number back I got through to the head office number. Bit scary especially if you have the head office number in your contacts,” said Mr Hayes.

A BOI spokesperson said that anyone with concerns should contact them immediately.

“We would remind customers that we will never phone or email and ask them to share account details, passwords or confidential information. If customers have any concerns please call 014885466 or 365security@boi.com,” said the BOI representative.

The warning comes less than 48 hours after another BOI cautionary statement advising customers of a fraudster who is allegedly making calls on the bank’s behalf.

A BOI spokesperson said this type of fraud is referred to as ‘vishing’ or ‘voice phishing’, where people can be manipulated into providing bank details over the phone.

"Vishing doesn’t indicate a data breach or account compromise – in the vast majority of cases fraudsters are simply cold calling and hoping that the victim has an account with a particular company. Business customers can often be targeted as their contact details are in the public domain," said the spokesperson.

The banks warned their customers to be “very careful of any ‘offers’ you may be asked to take up” and “never disclose any serial numbers of log in details to your accounts.”

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